'The deadline is super short' - Tuchel still not optimistic PSG's Mbappe will be fit for Champions League return

Last Updated

Thomas Tuchel says he still does not expect Kylian Mbappe to be fit for Paris Saint-Germain's upcoming Champions League clash with Atalanta despite the forward's best efforts.

Mbappe suffered an ankle injury during PSG's Coupe de France victory over Saint-Etienne, with the French forward seen on crutches for the ensuing celebration.

Shortly after, the club announced that Mbappe was facing a three-week absence, one that would keep him out of the Champions League opener on August 12.

Tuchel stated that it would take a "miracle" for Mbappe to be fit for the match against Atalanta, while team-mate Ander Herrera was a bit more hopeful as he said the club was "optimistic".

Former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger also weighed in on Mbappe's status, saying that he expects Mbappe to do whatever it takes to be fit for the upcoming match.

Ahead of a friendly against Sochaux on Wednesday, Tuchel says Mbappe is still doubtful, but the club will meet on Saturday to reassess Mbappe's status. 

"I have no idea," Tuchel told beIN Sports. "I see Kylian every day. He's at the training centre. He works hard with the physiotherapists almost 24 hours a day. 

"But the deadline is short, super short. We spoke with the doctor today and we decided to meet again on Saturday to see what phase he is in and if it is possible that he is on the bench against Atalanta. But I do not expect too much. "

Mbappe isn't the only PSG star in danger of missing the upcoming Champions League match, as Marco Verratti is now a doubt for the game against Atalanta.

PSG announced on Wednesday that Verratti suffered an injury in training on Tuesday following a clash with another player, and the Italian star was subsequently left out of PSG's squad for the match against Sochaux.

"[Verratti was] the victim of a severe shock yesterday in training," the club announced, "with a significant right calf contusion resulting in muscle damage which will be assessed in the next 72 hours."

Article continues below

While there is hope for Mbappe and Verratti, defender Layvin Kurzawa will miss out on the Atalanta game due to a "muscle injury to the right thigh contracted during the final of the Coupe de la Ligue". 

Neymar, Marquinhos, Angel Di Maria, Thiago Silva, Mauro Icardi, Thilo Kehrer and Presnel Kimpembe were also left out of Wednesday's friendly for precautionary reasons as the club looks ahead towards next week's Champions League clash.

PSG edged Borussia Dortmund in their round of 16 tie, winning 3-2 on aggregate against the German side after two goals from Neymar and one from Juan Bernat.