'Maybe it will be Sunday' - Neymar in line for PSG return

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FRANCK FIFE/AFP/Getty Images
Head coach Thomas Tuchel has said the attacker is desperate to get back on the pitch after his lengthy foot injury

Neymar could be in line to make his Paris Saint-Germain return against Monaco on Sunday, claimed head coach Thomas Tuchel.

The Brazil superstar has not played competitively since damaging a metatarsal in a Coupe de France win over Strasbourg on January 23.

Neymar, who has 13 goals in as many Ligue 1 outings this term, began training earlier this month but has not yet been fit enough to feature.

However, Tuchel says Neymar is closing on a comeback, which may come this weekend against  Monaco as PSG attempt to finally wrap up the title after missed opportunities against Strasbourg, Lille and Nantes.

"We have to wait, there are two training sessions left. Maybe it will be Sunday, I hope," Tuchel told a pre-match news conference.

“Neymar trained a lot with us, he worked hard and strong. He is impatient it is clear, when he is with us at training he shows it. I can feel that Ney feels free, he is not afraid, he is confident, he hits, he is decisive during the training matches.”

The former Barcelona man was on the receiving end of some robust challenges earlier this season, culminating in his long-term injury in January.

Tuchel had a warning for the league’s referees, saying Neymar needs more protection.

“For me the most important about him is that he feels free on the field, happy, protected by the referee,” said the PSG boss. 

“I hope he stays with his style of play and his passion because he is a special player, everyone arrives in the stadium to watch him play. If all players play at times to avoid contacts it's a shame.”

In other team news, Thomas Meunier and captain Thiago Silva remain absent, while Tuchel said late decisions will be taken on a host of other first-team stars, including Edinson Cavani and Angel Di Maria.

"For [Julian] Draxler, Marquinhos, Cavani and Di Maria, we have to wait," he added.

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"I'm not sure they are in the group. It is possible, but the opposite is possible too.”

PSG are on a surprising three-game winless run, having dropped points in just three of the previous 23 games.

A victory for the Parisians this weekend would ensure they collect their eighth domestic title. 

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