Paris Saint-Germain head coach Thomas Tuchel says the club have their hands tied over injured stars Neymar and Kylian Mbappe being called up to their respective national teams.
Tite and Didier Deschamps have summoned the players for Brazil and France respectively, despite the fact that neither was able to take part in Wednesday’s Champions League loss against RB Leipzig and is highly unlikely to play in Saturday’s Ligue 1 clash with third-placed Rennes.
While Tuchel hinted at his frustration at the state of affairs, he said that he has confidence that both will be treated sensibly on their deployment.
“It’s the right of the national team to call up players. We cannot do anything,” he lamented to the press.
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“If the boys are injured and can’t play, I always prefer that they don’t play.
“It’s a super important phase, a good time to recover for players, but we have confidence that they will be treated well, that they have good care and good preparation. It’s the truth. We have confidence in these people who are responsible for the national teams.
“If the players are called up, there’s nothing we can do.”
PSG have had chronic injury issues for the duration of the season, having also missed regular starters Marco Verratti and Juan Bernat for the loss in Germany.
Ahead of what is on paper an awkward match against Rennes, they will also be without Presnel Kimpembe in the heart of their defence and inspirational goalkeeper Keylor Navas.
“Presnel Kimpembe took a serious blow to the fifth metatarsal,” the coach confirmed. “Keylor Navas has minor muscle problems and will be out. This is also likely for Pablo Sarabia, who also has muscle pain.”
The midweek loss leaves PSG in serious danger of missing out on the Champions League knockout phase for the first time since QSI took over the club in 2011.
Tuchel finds himself a coach under pressure, and while he has seen his side string together seven wins domestically, an adverse result against the side that finished third in Ligue 1 last season could cost him his job.