PSG lifted by essential Champions League success as Neymar courts Messi


Paris Saint-Germain this week averted a disaster by beating Manchester United to revive their Champions League marketing campaign and the membership’s followers may even be getting giddy at the potential for seeing Lionel Messi within the French capital subsequent season.

Neymar scored twice in Manchester after which publicly acknowledged his want to staff up once more together with his outdated Barcelona teammate subsequent season, telling ESPN: “I need to play with him for positive, subsequent yr we’ve got to do it.”

With Messi having spent the final shut season attempting to engineer a transfer away from Barcelona, who’re struggling badly from the financial influence of the coronavirus, Neymar maybe feels a reunion in Paris is extra seemingly than his return to the Camp Nou.

In the meantime PSG are pondering methods to take care of Neymar’s contract, and that of Kylian Mbappe, which each expire in 2022.

The Qatar-owned membership are additionally feeling the consequences of the pandemic, which has slashed ticket income particularly, with video games in France being performed behind closed doorways.

Qualifying for the Champions League final 16 would offer a monetary enhance. Thomas Tuchel’s staff solely require a draw at residence to Istanbul Basaksehir subsequent week to seal their progress.

“I did not come to Paris to play within the Europa League,” Neymar instructed Brazil’s Esporte Interativo.

Nonetheless, Tuchel warned: “We’ve virtually certified, which implies we’ve got not certified but. That’s the actuality. Being virtually pregnant doesn’t imply you’re pregnant.”

Final season’s Champions League runners-up are a piece in progress they usually have allowed the chasing home pack to catch up.

A loss at Monaco and a draw with Bordeaux of their final two matches have left PSG simply two factors away from Lille, Lyon, Monaco and Montpellier in Ligue 1.

PSG go to Montpellier this weekend realizing a defeat would knock them off prime spot.

Montpellier, although, are with out their prime scorer Andy Delort after he examined optimistic for coronavirus for the second time in three months.

One to observe: Patrick Vieira

The France 1998 World Cup-winning midfielder has been lauded for the regular work he has accomplished within the final two years at Good, taking the Cote d’Azur aspect to seventh after which fifth place and European qualification final season.

Vieira’s aspect have been anticipated to kick on this season following appreciable funding from the membership’s British homeowners Ineos.

As an alternative, hampered by the lack of captain Dante to a critical harm, Good are within the backside half of Ligue 1 after a shock residence defeat by struggling Dijon final weekend they usually have upset within the Europa League. That has turned up the stress on ex-Arsenal star Vieira.

“After I was a participant I had very troublesome moments in my profession and I by no means gave up,” Vieira mentioned this week.

“I’ve at all times fought and held on in there. What I’m going by means of now is not going to change me.

“I do know outcomes usually are not good however I’ll hold working laborious and being much more demanding of myself.”

Key stats

4 – The variety of factors separating the highest six in Ligue 1. Marseille, in sixth, are 4 factors behind leaders PSG however have two video games in hand on the groups above them.

3 – If PSG fail to win at Montpellier they are going to have gone three Ligue 1 video games with out successful for the primary time since April 2019.

9 – Lyon have injected life into their season on a run of 9 video games with out defeat, leaving them simply two factors off prime spot.

Fixtures (Kick-offs GMT)

Friday

Nimes v Marseille (2000)

Saturday

Rennes v Lens (1600), Montpellier v Paris Saint-Germain (2000)

Sunday

Lille v Monaco (1200), Angers v Lorient, Bordeaux v Brest, Dijon v Saint-Etienne, Nantes v Strasbourg (all 1400), Reims v Good (1600), Metz v Lyon (2000)

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