“Anything can happen” said Paris Saint-Germain head coach Thomas Tuchel about Neymar’s possible move back to Barcelona as he spoke to the press on Thursday on the eve of a Ligue 1 match at Metz.
The Brazil star trained with his team-mates on Thursday, but Tuchel said that he is not going to play against Metz.
PSG and Barcelona presidents Nasser Al Khelaifi and Josep Maria Bartomeu met on Thursday in Monaco where they both travelled to take part to a UEFA Strategy Committee ahead of the Champions League draw.
“I can only say that I’m relaxed, calm. When it comes to soccer, everything is crazy. Anything can happen, it’s not the time to lose your mind. It is what it is. There are still four days (left before the transfer market ends). Anything can happen” was Tuchel’s comment.
Manchester United flop Alexis Sanchez has completed his loan move to Inter Milan for the remainder of the season.
The 30-year-old arrived to a huge fanfare in January 2018 in a swap deal that saw out-of-favour Henrikh Mkhitaryan head to Arsenal.
But flashes of early promise swiftly petered out and Sanchez heads to Inter having scored a meagre five goals in 45 appearances.
The Chile international has followed Romelu Lukaku in switching Old Trafford for San Siro and the PA news agency understands United will be covering around £6.5million of his wages.
The highest-paid player in the Premier League heads to Serie A for the remainder of the 2019-20, but there is not believed to be an option to buy.
The Premier League side posted on Twitter: “We can confirm that Alexis Sanchez joins Inter Milan on loan until 30 June 2020. We wish @Alexis_Sanchez the best of luck in Italy.”
Just two weeks ago manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer spoke of his belief that Sanchez would come good at United but it became clear in the meantime that a move was on the cards.
The manager will face questions about the 30-year-old at Friday’s press conference previewing the trip to Southampton. Sanchez may not be the only player leaving Old Trafford for Italy.
PA understands Roma have held discussions over long-serving defender Chris Smalling, while Italy international Matteo Darmian is keen on a belated return home. Marcos Rojo has also been the subject of speculation as the European transfer window edges closer to its September 2 deadline.
Paris Saint-Germain coach Thomas Tuchel cannot wait for the transfer window to close so the Neymar saga can be put to bed – for the time being at least.
The Brazilian, who is yet to play this season, has been repeatedly linked with a return to Spain with either former club Barcelona or Real Madrid, but his future remains unresolved.
The European window closes on September 2 and for Tuchel, whose side travel to Metz in Ligue 1 on Friday night, that date cannot come soon enough.
Asked if he had set a deadline for a deal for Neymar, he said: “You think we made a deadline? It’s a little late for a deadline, right? Now, it’s September 2, right?”
Tuchel admitted the lack of clarity over his star player’s next move was hampering him.
“It changes everything, but what can I say?” he told a press conference, according to Le Parisien.
“Everyone knows my opinion. You know that it’s not the coach who decides everything in a situation like this, in a big club, with a big, big player. It’s a situation with a lot of parties. The first goal is to arrive on September 3 and after that we can think about the composition of this team. I do not want that, but it’s the reality in football.”
Tuchel is determined to remain calm amid the frenzy of the last few days of the window, though.
“The situation in the world of football can sometimes be crazy, so it’s not the time to lose your head,” said the German, who refused to comment on a possible move for Barcelona’s Ousmane Dembele, whom he coached at Borussia Dortmund.
“We have to work with the fact anything can happen in the next four days, or the situation could stay as it is. I have to stay focused on the things I can influence: training, the team and the preparation for tomorrow’s match.”
Neymar will not feature against Metz, although he is not on PSG’s extensive injury list, which includes forwards Edinson Cavani and Kylian Mbappe as well as Julian Draxler, Thilo Kehrer, Ander Herrera and Abdou Diallo.
“I don’t think the intensity of a pre-season is dangerous,” Tuchel said when asked about the number of injuries so early in the campaign.
“But at the end of a season where the players at big European clubs play in 20-team leagues, play two domestic cup competitions, have Champions League matches and international games with their country – that volume of games increases the risk of injuries, but there isn’t just one reason to explain it.”
PSG travel to Metz having already tasted defeat in the league, to leaders Rennes, although they bounced back to beat Toulouse last time out.
Top-flight new boys Metz have four points from their opening three games.