Neymar Out Four Weeks, Will Miss PSG's Champions League Match at Barcelona

Author:
Publish date:

Neymar will be missing PSG's Champions League last-16 first leg vs. Barcelona on Tuesday, and perhaps the second as well, after being ruled out for approximately four weeks with an adductor injury.

PSG confirmed the timeline on Thursday, a day after Neymar was injured in a match in the Coupe de France's round of 64 vs. Caen. With the home leg vs. Barcelona due to be played March 10, Neymar will be in a race to get fit to play in at least one of the matches against his former club.

PSG coach Mauricio Pochettino was questioned for risking Neymar so early in the domestic cup competition against a second-tier side, but he didn't have any second thoughts, saying, "I have no regrets on having chosen to play Neymar. He was fit to play. These things happen."

Hindsight is 20/20, but he might have some regrets now that he's forced to go to Camp Nou without Neymar, in addition to the injured Angel Di Maria. 

The timing is also unfortunate for PSG given that the club was reportedly close to announcing it had signed Neymar to a four-year contract extension, not that a four-week layoff will alter any long-term arrangements.

With Neymar out, Kylian Mbappé will shoulder a greater load of the attacking burden for PSG, while the likes of Moise Kean, Mauro Icardi, Pablo Sarabia and Julian Draxler pick up the slack.

Neymar scored six goals in the group stage of the Champions League, matching his output in 11 Ligue 1 games thus far. He also has three assists in league play, where PSG surprisingly sits in third place, three points behind league-leader Lille and a point behind second-place Lyon through 24 matches. PSG doesn't play either of those sides until after Neymar is expected to return.