'Big-hearted' Neymar happy at PSG - Tuchel

By Timothy Abraham 18 December 2019 40
'Big-hearted' Neymar happy at PSG - Tuchel

Paris Saint-Germain head coach Thomas Tuchel claims Neymar is happy at the club and his own relationship with the forward has never been better.

Neymar was involved in a transfer saga earlier in the year, with a possible return to Barcelona failing to materialise before the deadline.

PSG fans initially gave the Brazil international a hostile reception on his return to first-team action, but he has reintegrated himself with some key performances.

With the January transfer window fast approaching, Tuchel insisted Neymar, 27, was in a good frame of mind in the French capital.

"Between him and me, not much has changed," Tuchel said at a news conference ahead of the Coupe de la Ligue clash with Le Mans on Wednesday.

"We have always had a good relationship. He's happy and expects the team to continue to grow. 

"He is accepted in the dressing room. He is extraordinary and is gaining physical capacity at the moment. 

"He still has a big heart, he always speaks frankly. He loves football and playing in a competitive team. We can enjoy it, it's great."

Neymar could be rested for the midweek fixture with Le Mans after Tuchel confirmed he will rotate his squad.

"This meeting is also an opportunity to give playing time to certain players," Tuchel said.

"Le Mans is a very aggressive, offensive team that can score goals. I expect a very courageous team in a big atmosphere. 

"We have to respect the opponent, the competition. It is up to us to show our quality - Le Mans will have nothing to lose."

Tuchel also revealed his excitement at the Champions League draw, which pitted PSG against former club Borussia Dortmund in the last 16 of the competition.

He added: "In the round of 16, anything can happen, it's a great team in Germany.

"It's a special match for me. I have a lot of friends, I lived there three years; it's an extraordinary stadium."

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