Neymar is a doubt for the first leg of Paris Saint-Germain’s Champions League tie against Manchester United in three weeks having been taken to hospital after injuring his foot in a 2-0 victory over Racing Strasbourg in the French Cup on Wednesday.
The Brazil striker left the pitch after an hour after Strasbourg midfielder Moataz Zemzemi attempted to tackle him three times before referee Johan Hamel awarded a free-kick. He was later taken to hospital for precautionary tests, with manager Thomas Tuchel admitting he is “worried” about the forward’s condition and blaming the referee for not blowing for a foul sooner.
“Neymar is worried, because it’s the same foot, the right foot, in the same area,” Tuchel said in refrence to the metatarsal injury that kept the 26-year-old out for several weeks last season. “There’s no news for the moment, he’s gone to hospital. I need to wait for the doctor to give me news about Ney. It’s always complicated [with these kind of injuries]. The referee did not whistle after one tackle, then a second, then a third. After that, he has twisted his foot.”
PSG travel to Old Trafford to face United for the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie on 12 February and are already sweating on the fitness of key midfielder Marco Verratti, who is suffering from an ankle injury. Tuchel’s side prevailed at the Parc des Princes thanks to a goal in each half from Edinson Cavani and Angel Di Maria, although Strasbourg midfielder Anthony Goncalves expressed no sympathy for Neymar and even suggested the injury is a direct result of how he plays.
“It’s his style. But if you play like that don’t complain if you take some knocks after,” Goncalves said. “He’s a great player, and I respect the player he is, but we’re not here so he has fun at our expense. If he wants to have fun, we’ll respond with the weapons we have. We have a jersey to defend. We’re not here for a laugh.”