Neymar is expected to be out for four weeks after the Paris Saint-Germain star suffered a hamstring injury on international duty.

The Brazil forward was withdrawn in the 12th minute of the Selecao's 1-1 friendly draw with Nigeria on Sunday.

PSG announced Neymar had an MRI scan on Monday that confirmed the injury, which will be re-evaluated in eight days.

Neymar has played just five games for PSG this season owing to an ankle injury picked up in June.

The ex-Barcelona forward did not make his first appearance until September, having attempted to force a move away from the club he joined for a world-record €222million fee in 2017.

He was booed by the home fans on his return to the side in a 1-0 victory over Strasbourg, in which he scored a spectacular overhead kick winner.

The 27-year-old has four goals in his five games for Thomas Tuchel's men, who have a two-point lead in Ligue 1 and have two wins from two in the Champions League.

Speaking after the stalemate with the Super Eagles, Brazil coach Tite said Neymar was not a pre-match injury risk.

"It would be irresponsible and incompetent of me [to play him if he was a doubt]," Tite explained.

"I would have to receive the complaints of the coach and the president of PSG if that happened."

Neymar posted an image on his Instagram story of him back in Paris and receiving treatment for the injury.

The length of Neymar's absence means he is likely to miss two Champions League games with Club Brugge and Ligue 1 matches with Nice, Marseille, Dijon and Brest.

In the same announcement, PSG said Kylian Mbappe is “positively following his recovery programme” after missing the game against Angers last time out.

Edinson Cavani, who has been out since August with a hip issue, continues training with the squad.

Julian Draxler (foot) and Colin Dagba (thigh) have returned to training.

Neymar is expected to be out for four weeks after the Paris Saint-Germain star suffered a hamstring injury on international duty.

Lyon have confirmed the appointment of Rudi Garcia as head coach on a deal reportedly running until June 2021.

The former Lille, Roma and Marseille boss replaces Sylvinho, who was sacked last week less than five months on from succeeding Bruno Genesio.

Laurent Blanc and Jose Mourinho were linked to the role, but a recruitment panel headed up by sporting director Juninho Pernambucano and including Gerard Houllier "unanimously" agreed on Garcia.

The 55-year-old won a domestic double in charge of Lille in 2010-11 and led Marseille to the Europa League final two seasons ago.

His appointment comes as something of a surprise given his chequered history with Lyon president Jean-Michael Aulas.

In April 2018, Aulas blasted the "arrogance" of the then-Marseille boss, who suggested Lyon got preferential treatment from referees, amid a battle between the clubs for Champions League qualification.

Juninho said: "I chose Rudi Garcia because he is a fighter who, like us, has the ambition to win titles and succeed on the European stage.

"He is an experienced coach who has already won trophies. During my various interviews, I had a real football connection with him. We speak the same language in terms of tactics and style."

Garcia stepped down from his position with Marseille at the end of last term.

He will be presented to the media at a news conference on Tuesday.

Where will Fabian Ruiz be playing by the end of January?

Napoli will be hoping Fabian remains at Stadio San Paolo.

However, LaLiga giants Real Madrid and Barcelona are determined to bring the former Real Betis midfielder back to Spain.

 

TOP STORY – MADRID SURPASS BARCA IN BATTLE FOR FABIAN

Madrid have moved ahead of Barca in the race for Napoli star Fabian and want to sign the midfielder in January, according to Marca.

Fabian has attracted plenty of interest since swapping Betis for Serie A side Napoli, where the Spaniard has starred since his €30milion arrival in 2018.

Barca have been keeping tabs on the 23-year-old, but rivals Madrid have reportedly jumped to the front of the queue.

 

ROUND-UP

- While Fabian is of interest, Tuttosport says Barca are eyeing Inter star Lautaro Martinez, who has a €111m release clause.

- There is plenty happening at Camp Nou. Mundo Deportivo reports Barca are willing to let Ivan Rakitic and Carles Alena leave in January. Barca are also reportedly not interested in signing a new centre-back as they trust Jean-Clair Todibo or Ronald Araujo, with Marca saying right-back is an area they are looking to strengthen.

- According to Corriere dello Sport, Fiorentina are targeting in-demand Brescia midfielder Sandro Tonali. The 19-year-old has been linked to Juventus and Manchester United.

- AS claims Madrid are considering a move for Tottenham's Christian Eriksen in January, before his contract expires at the end of the season.

Hakan Calhanoglu's time at AC Milan could be coming to an end, with Calciomercato reporting the struggling Serie A side may sell the 25-year-old. Calhanoglu has struggled for consistency since joining from Bayer Leverkusen in 2017.

Barca are lining up an approach for PSV sensation Donyell Malen, according to Sport. It comes as AS reports Ernesto Valverde's side are set to hand contract extensions to Marc-Andre ter Stegen and Nelson Semedo.

Brazil coach Tite is adamant Neymar had shown no sign of injury before Sunday's 1-1 friendly draw with Nigeria, in which the forward was withdrawn after 12 minutes due to leg discomfort.

Neymar was named in Brazil's starting XI for the friendly in Singapore but appeared to reach for the back of his left leg as he made an early exit.

He was then seen in conversation with a member of Brazil's staff on the bench, though Neymar did not look to be in significant pain.

Nevertheless, given the injury problems the forward has sustained in the last two years, Tite was asked after the game if he had taken a risk by playing him.

Tite was unequivocal in his response, insisting the Paris Saint-Germain star would not have played had there been any doubt over his fitness.

"No, not at all," Tite replied when asked if Neymar was at risk before the game.

"It would be irresponsible and incompetent of me [to play him if he was a doubt]. I would have to receive the complaints of the coach and the president of PSG if that happened."

With the international break now over for Brazil, Neymar will return to PSG, who are next in action against Nice on Friday.

 

A potential hamstring problem ended Neymar's involvement during the early stages of Brazil's friendly against Nigeria.

The Paris Saint-Germain star did not appear to be in much discomfort but reached for the back of his left leg as he made his way off the pitch after 12 minutes of Sunday's game in Singapore.

He was then seen in conversation with a member of Brazil's staff on the bench at the National Stadium.

Philippe Coutinho replaced the 27-year-old, who won his 100th international cap in Thursday's 1-1 draw with Senegal.

An ankle injury forced Neymar to miss this year's Copa America on home soil and he only returned to action for PSG a month ago, with his reintroduction to the team delayed in part by his widely reported desire to engineer a transfer back to former club Barcelona.

The forward made his first appearance of the season and spectacularly scored the winner in the Ligue 1 victory over Strasbourg on September 14.

Further goals followed against Lyon, Bordeaux and Angers before he headed to Asia to link up with Tite's squad.

Neymar does not have to leave Paris Saint-Germain to fulfil his goal of becoming the world's best player, according to Brazil team-mate Alisson.

The forward was strongly linked with a return to Barcelona during the transfer window, but no move to Camp Nou came to fruition.

Neymar has instead remained in the French capital, scoring four goals in five Ligue 1 games since recovering from a foot injury.

The 27-year-old did not finish in the top 10 for the 2018 Ballon d'Or but, asked if Neymar could become the best player in the world by joining Barcelona, Alisson told Mundo Deportivo: "I think that Neymar can be the best in the world on any team.

"Neymar is a high-level player and would be fundamental in any team in the world. If he returns to Barcelona or not... I wish him good luck and to play with his usual joy and energy, wherever he is."

Five-time Ballon d'Or winner Lionel Messi was reportedly pushing for Neymar to be signed by Barca, but he told RAC1 this month he was surprised his former team-mate did not join Real Madrid after it became clear he wanted to leave PSG.

Messi and Alisson met in the Champions League for the second season in a row last term, with the former Roma goalkeeper again coming out on top with a stunning second-leg comeback.

The Argentina captain had struck twice in the first leg to seemingly give Liverpool a mountain to climb but they won 4-0 at Anfield to overturn their deficit, going on to win the tournament by defeating fellow Premier League side Tottenham in the final.

Alisson also got the better of Messi at this year's Copa America, where Brazil beat Argentina 2-0 in the semi-finals before going on to lift the trophy on home soil with a win over Peru.

"The truth is that Messi played very well in the first leg in Barcelona and achieved two goals, but in the return I managed to stop him in some important moments," Alisson added.

"Messi is one of the best players in football history, but I don't think only of duels with him. Both Barcelona and Argentina are two very good teams that have high quality players.

"Luckily, in the last three matches I have been able to overcome him, but the merits are of the whole team: Rome, Liverpool and Brazil."

 

Kylian Mbappe said the faith shown in him by Didier Deschamps was worth "all the money in the world" as he spoke of the strength of his bond with the France coach.

Les Bleus beat Iceland 1-0 without Mbappe on Friday, with the Paris Saint-Germain forward missing the Euro 2020 qualifier due to a hamstring problem, and he will not be available to face Turkey in Paris on Monday.

Mbappe has not played for France since he scored in a 4-0 victory over Andorra in June, but he has been fully committed to Deschamps since the coach picked him during a tricky moment in his career.

Deschamps called Mbappe up to the France squad while he was sidelined at Monaco with his loan move to PSG pending, and the forward has not forgotten it.

Mbappe told TF1: "I think in particular that he selected me while I was not playing anymore - for a player, you don't know how much it means.

"It's a signal... a very strong signal! It is a mark of confidence that is worth all the money in the world.

"I know the coach trusts and believes in me. And once he did that, I felt I could die for him on the pitch ever since. If he told me to play in goal, I would."

Jose Mourinho rejected the chance to hold talks with Lyon regarding their vacant head coach position because he has "already chosen another" team, according to the Ligue 1 club's president Jean-Michel Aulas.

Mourinho has been out of work since December last year, when he was sacked by Manchester United following a run of poor results.

The Portuguese coach has this season made regular television appearances as a pundit, widely attracting acclaim for his insight, demeanour and analysis.

Lyon sacked Sylvinho on Monday after just one win in his last nine matches at the helm and Aulas had identified Mourinho as a target, though the former Chelsea, Inter and Real Madrid boss apparently turned them down on account of having another job lined up.

"We had some fairly flattering exchanges over text," Aulas told reporters via a telephone news conference.

"It was nice for everyone. He did not accept our proposal to meet because he has already chosen another club."

Sylvinho's arrival coincided with the return of club icon Juninho Pernambucano as sporting director in pre-season.

Aulas confirmed the decision to dismiss the former Manchester City and Barcelona defender came from Juninho, with Sylvinho's perceived negative brand of football doing little to endear himself.

"It was indeed Juninho who took the decision to change coach, he even had this view a little earlier on," Aulas said. "He is going to continue to take responsibility on the football side in the same way.

"He is a boy who breathes football. In the first matches, he detected a certain number of problems. It is he who explained his decision to Sylvinho.

"I didn't know of him [Sylvinho] before Juninho told me about him. The defensive style he offered created a destabilising effect in terms of the normal attacking style of Lyon. We made a mistake, but in general we don't make a mistake twice."

While Aulas seemed to confirm Patrick Vieira will not be considered as he is under contract at Nice, Remi Garde – who coached Lyon between 2011 and 2014 – is an option.

"He hasn't been contacted yet, but that is a possible route. For the moment, talks haven't happened, but maybe they will," Aulas added.

Paris Saint-Germain full-back Juan Bernat was surprised Neymar remained with the Ligue 1 giants this season despite strong interest from Barcelona.

Brazil star Neymar was a constant subject of speculation in the previous transfer window, with the forward doing little to hush the rumours of a potential return to Camp Nou.

Barca were said to have offered PSG cash and up to three players – reportedly Ivan Rakitic, Jean-Clair Todibo and Ousmane Dembele – but the deal did not go through, despite the Catalan club reportedly being confident of getting it over the line.

The strained relationship between the two clubs from when Neymar left Barca for PSG for €222million two years earlier was said to have impacted discussions, though Bernat acknowledged he felt the former Santos talent was more likely to leave than stay.

"Yes, it's true that I saw him more [likely] out of the club than in it for everything that was said in the press," Bernat told Marca.

"Until the transfer window closed, anything could've happened.

"It was the best outcome for us [PSG]. He makes a difference with [Kylian] Mbappe. In the first game, as soon as he returned, he scored a goal.

"Then against Lyon he was also decisive. They [Neymar and Mbappe] are a different level.

"They are very skilled players. They carry the ball and make you suffer. Luckily we have them in our team."

Similarly, Mbappe was also linked with a move away from the Parc des Princes, with Real Madrid said to be eager to sign him.

Bernat is not surprised Mbappe attracts such interest, having seen first-hand in training that the 20-year-old is "practically impossible" to stop.

He said: "In a race Mbappe is unstoppable. If he starts [running], you're lost. When he has space, it is very complicated to slow him down.

"With the power he has it is practically impossible. Either you anticipate or there's nothing you can do. He competes very well, and that's what's going to make him very big.

"It [Madrid's interest] is normal, but he is ours and I hope he will always stay with us. He is in a big club."

Another day, another rumour about Christian Eriksen.

The soon-to-be free agent Eriksen wants a new challenge after flagging his intent during the previous transfer window.

A move to LaLiga appeals and a Spanish giant from the capital are reportedly ready to pounce.

 

TOP STORY – MADRID EYE ERIKSEN 

AS and Marca claim Real Madrid are ready to make a move for Tottenham midfielder Christian Eriksen in January.

Eriksen is a free agent at the end of the season, and the Spurs star has been linked to the likes of Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Juventus, Manchester United and Inter.

However, Madrid are reportedly unwilling to wait until season's end as they look to strengthen their midfield.

ROUND-UP

Inter are eyeing Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic, says FC Inter News. Matic has found himself out of favour under United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and a switch to Serie A could be on the cards for the Serbia international, whose contract expires at the end of the season.

- According to Calciomercato, Serie A champions Juventus are looking to sign Chelsea full-back Emerson Palmieri. The Italy international worked with Maurizio Sarri during the former Chelsea boss' time at Stamford Bridge.

Massimiliano Allegri has handed United a "deadline" for him to be given the job at Old Trafford, says La Gazzetta dello Sport. Solskjaer is under growing pressure, with the Red Devils enduring a difficult season and former Juventus boss Allegri has emerged as a possible replacement.

- Arsenal playmaker Mesut Ozil fears he has played his last game for the Gunners, according to the Mirror. Ozil has struggled to establish himself since Unai Emery's arrival and the former Germany international has been linked to MLS outfit DC United and Turkish giants Fenerbahce.

- Le10Sport claims former Chile, Sevilla and Argentina coach Jorge Sampaoli is on the shortlist to fill the Lyon vacancy following Sylvinho's sacking. Sampaoli is in charge of Brazilian side Santos.

- Gianluca Di Marzio reports Claudio Ranieri is in the mix to take over at Sampdoria, who sacked Eusebio Di Francesco prior to the international break. Ranieri – who sensationally led Leicester City to Premier League glory in 2015-16 – last oversaw Roma on a temporary basis last term. Ex-AC Milan coach Gennaro Gattuso reportedly turned down the job.

- Manchester United are among the admirers of rising Mexico star Sebastian Cordova, reports Record. The 22-year-old America playmaker made his international debut for El Tri last week. The attacking third and midfield are areas of concern for United, who have also been linked to Barcelona's Ivan Rakitic and Juventus striker Mario Mandzukic.

Neymar attempted to draw a line under months of transfer speculation by insisting he is "happy and comfortable" and Paris Saint-Germain, for whom he vowed to give his all.

The Brazil forward openly discussed the fact  he wanted to leave the Parc des Princes after two years with the French champions but says he is no longer at odds with the club.

PSG fans booed Neymar when he made his return to action this season, yet he has responded by scoring four goals in five Ligue 1 appearances.

At a news conference on the eve of Brazil's clash with Senegal, in which he is set to win his 100th international cap, Neymar told reporters: "Everyone knows what happened in the summer market and the desire I had to leave.

"Today, I feel happy and comfortable with the club, too. It's not just with the national team that I'm happy. The season started out very well for me.

"I will defend my club tooth and nail. I will give 100 per cent for us to achieve great things.

"It was a long summer for me. I knew that I had to prepare, in all circumstances, for a good season. Thank God, it has started well and I hope it stays that way."

The 27-year-old forward missed three months of the 2018-19 season with a foot injury, similar to an issue he suffered in the previous campaign.

The problems restricted Neymar to 20 Ligue 1 appearances in his first season in France and just 17 in his second, and he has targeted a healthier, more fruitful year for Thomas Tuchel's men in 2019-20.

"There have been more than three months of injury treatment in the last two years," he said. "This gets in the way of any athlete.

"But if you look at all the games and numbers you will see that I never stopped playing football. Unfortunately in an athlete's life, this can occur. You have to have a good head and be prepared to go through it.

"My hope for this season is to stay fit, to hope that nothing bad happens."

As pressure builds on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, there is speculation Manchester United are already looking around for future managers.

According to reports, one such potential candidate is a man making waves in the Bundesliga, now with RB Leipzig.

Even though Solskjaer appears to have the backing of United's hierarchy, the time might come to look to the future - just like the club's former manager Jose Mourinho, who has his eye on a comeback.

 

TOP STORY - UNITED CONSIDER NAGELSMANN

Manchester United are interested in Julian Nagelsmann as a future manager, according to the Daily Mail.

Just 32, Nagelsmann has impressed in the Bundesliga, initially with Hoffenheim and this season at RB Leipzig.

Although Ole Solskjaer still has support at the club despite their worst league start for 30 years, it is reported by the newspaper that United are "gathering information" on Nagelsmann with a view to a future approach to take charge of the first team.

ROUND-UP

- Jose Mourinho, is plotting a Premier League return and is keeping an eye on Mauricio Pochettino's situation at Tottenham, according to the Daily Mail.

- Whatever happens with the United manager job, transfer plans for next year are already being drawn up. The big names being eyed for next season are Kalidou Koulibaly and Declan RiceGoal reports.

- In Italy, Juventus have made it clear they will not sell Paulo Dybala in the January transfer window, Calciomercato says. Dybala was linked with United and Spurs in the previous window.

Gareth Bale, meanwhile, considers being left out of the Champions League draw with Club Brugge to be the final straw at Real Madrid, and he wants out next year, AS claims.

- Finally, in more news concerning United bosses of the past, the Mirror and the Daily Mail say there is a growing chance David Moyes could return to Everton if the under-fire Marco Silva is sacked, with the Scot now odds-on in some places to take charge again.

Kylian Mbappe has returned to Paris Saint-Germain and will miss France's Euro 2020 qualifiers with Iceland and Turkey due to injury.

The 20-year-old forward returned from a hamstring problem in the 1-0 win over Bordeaux on September 28 but suffered a complication to the treated area, leading him to miss the 4-0 Ligue 1 defeat of Angers prior to the international break.

Mbappe joined up with the France squad but, following medical tests, the French Football Federation (FFF) has confirmed it has allowed the player to leave Didier Deschamps' group.

Borussia Monchengladbach's Alassane Plea has been called up as Mbappe's replacement.

France face Iceland on Friday before meeting Turkey on Monday in Euro 2020 qualifying.

They are second in Group H on 15 points, the same as leaders Turkey.

Mbappe has only managed six appearances for PSG in all competitions this season, scoring twice.

The former Monaco star will attempt to regain fitness in time for PSG's next Ligue 1 match, which is against Nice on October 18.

Neymar is a "really good guy" according to Thomas Tuchel – although the Paris Saint-Germain head coach admits such a label might be a hard sell to outsiders.

The Brazil star saw his stock tumble with PSG fans as speculation over a move back to LaLiga dominated pre-season.

Despite being booed on his return, the 27-year-old has four goals in five Ligue 1 appearances this term and Tuchel is not surprised by the instant returns.

"This guy has a good background. It may be hard to imagine when you see it from the outside but he is really a good guy," the former Borussia Dortmund boss told beIN SPORTS. 

"It's not hard to be close to him and convince him to do the right thing."

Real Madrid and former club Barcelona were both linked to blockbuster moves for Neymar and Tuchel accepts the player's head was turned.

"Between us, not much has changed," he said. "I knew he wanted to leave the club and he knew I was against it, that for me it was neither the right moment nor the right decision to take. 

"He clearly knew that as a coach, I did not want him to leave. But we also knew that it was not my decision or really his either in the end. 

"There was need for a club to set the price. We both agreed that it was not decided at our level and that this should not affect our relationship, because we knew that there was the possibility of continuing to work together. It would have been stupid to ruin everything."

Indeed, Tuchel identified last season's shock Champions League exit against Manchester United as a bigger setback to bounce back from.

PSG shelled a 2-0 first-leg advantage to go out on away goals against Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's injury-hit side and proceeded to stagger over the line in Ligue 1, before losing the Coupe de France final on penalties to Rennes.

"For three days I was in a really dark place like never before," Tuchel said.

"I knew what we worked for and I knew how hard it was to reach this point with this team and this club, after the past seasons and what happened.

"I knew how hard we tried to influence the squad and how the squad responded – it was really big work to achieve that kind of level, to beat Liverpool, to win at Red Star Belgrade and to go to Manchester United and be the first French team to win there.

"To make this kind of a performance and crash in the second leg… like you have a car accident, running over the green lights and you get a crash from the side. It felt like this. What did we do wrong? We could feel after that how big that crash was.

"Even between the two games, we could feel everybody in the city believed it was different and we could go through. We did not, we could not hold it. It felt like sand running through our fingers."

He added: "Suddenly a lot of injuries, the mood changes in the dressing room, the mood from outside. The players were not immune to all this and it was very, very hard for us to finish the season with the same spirit.

"It was not possible. The biggest example is the cup final, where we led 2-0 and it was a clear victory for us and we lost in the end.

"I trained myself not to read too much, because who knows more about us than us, but I feel it, I hear it. It was immense."

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