France legend Marcel Desailly believes that Neymar Jr’s injury absence is no obstacle to PSG’s overcoming a 3-1 aggregate deficit in the return leg of their UEFA Champions League round of 16 tie against Real Madrid.

Paris Saint-Germain left themselves with it all to do at the Parc des Princes on Tuesday March 6 after conceding two late goals in the 3-1 first-leg defeat at the Santiago Bernabeu, and with Neymar Jr picking up a potentially serious injury in Sunday night’s Classique win over Marseille, the task is getting tougher and tougher.

‘Real quality in the squad’

But not for ’98 World Cup winner Desailly: “Even without Neymar, PSG can qualify. The toughest thing is that PSG can’t afford to concede a goal, as that will put them in real difficulty right away. So we’ll see. Sure, Neymar will be out, but they have a pretty impressive squad. Before Neymar arrived, PSG’s star was [Angel] Di Maria. There is real quality in the squad so, right now, I don’t think there is anything to be worried about.”

Di Maria, who will more than likely be first in line to replace the injured Brazilian superstar, should have a chance to get into the swing of things ahead of next Tuesday’s acid test with a starting spot in the Coupe de France quarter-final Classique against Olympique de Marseille on Wednesday night.


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