Paris Saint-Germain captain Thiago Silva said on Sunday he hopes Neymar will stay at the club but admitted that his compatriot’s future is up in the air.
The Brazilian striker has been linked with a move back to his former club Barcelona – and uncertainty over his future has seen him left out of the French champions squad for two weeks in a row.
With Neymar missing, PSG suffered a shock 2-1 defeat at Rennes in Ligue 1 on Sunday.
Despite Edinson Cavani scoring first after a blunder in the Rennes defence, M’Baye Niang equalised for Rennes just before the break, and Romain De Castillo scored the winner early in the second half to complete the turnaround.
Neymar has been linked with a return to Barcelona and last month PSG sporting director Leonardo said the forward could leave “if there is an offer which suits everyone” after he failed to report for pre-season training.
The 27-year-old Brazil international, who was ruled out of this summer’s Copa America due to an ankle problem, subsequently travelled with the club to China.
And Neymar trained with his team-mates ahead of Saturday’s Trophee des Champions clash with Rennes in Shenzhen, for which he is suspended.
When asked about Neymar and if he wanted him to stay, Mbappe was quoted by L’Equipe as saying: “It is as usual. He’s got a situation that everyone knows. There were no special things. He trained, demonstrated his quality.
“Of course I want him to stay. I’ve talked to him about it, he knows what I think of him and his situation.
“Everything’s fine between us. We have a relationship based on honesty and respect. He knows that I respect him and admire him.”
PSG boss Thomas Tuchel told PSG’s official website: “Neymar was great. He was at his best level.
“If you saw training you saw he was very happy, and played very well. But that’s normal. He loves football, the pitch was great and the temperature was great.
“Every footballer loves that and he did too. Unfortunately he is suspended for tomorrow, but it’s great to see him back.”
Meanwhile, Mbappe has apologised for comments he made at the Trophees UNFP awards ceremony in Paris in May, at which he was named Ligue 1’s best player and best young player of the season.
The 20-year-old France international said at the ceremony: “I am at a turning point in my career. I have discovered so many things here, and I feel that maybe it is the time to take on more responsibility. Maybe at Paris Saint-Germain – with pleasure – or in a new project elsewhere.”
According to L’Equipe, when Mbappe was asked on Friday if he had considered leaving PSG in May, he said: “No. These statements were quite ambiguous because I left a lot of doors open.
“And at that time, no-one was able to know what I was talking about. Only the president (Nasser Al-Khelaifi), the coach (Tuchel) and I knew.
“After that, people had to think it was inappropriate. That’s right, it wasn’t the right place.
“I would like to take this opportunity to apologise to the players present at this ceremony. I kind of ruined the party. I’m stealing the show negatively.
“The fans are mad at me too. I apologise too. Let’s say I apologise without apologising because they didn’t get the message. But it was in PSG’s interest. Today, everything is fine in the best of worlds.”
The Brazilian has been linked with a return to his former club after his unhappiness at the French capital was made public.
On Saturday, Neymar sent a message that could be interpreted as disrespectful by his current employers. When asked about his best memory in football, the 27-year-old spoke about the time he inspired his former club to a historical come-back against PSG in the 2016/17 Champions League last 16.
“My best memory in football? What we felt when we scored the sixth goal. I never felt something like this. It was incredible,” he said.
Any doubts of whether the answer was a slip of tongue were removed when he provided the same answer when asked about his best dressing room memory.
“The best memory in a locker room? Well, when we won against PSG with Barcelona, we all went crazy. I believe it was the best possible feeling for all of us,” Neymar concluded.