Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar could be granted an extended period of leave in March by new manager Mauricio Pochettino, allowing the striker to return to Brazil so he can celebrate his sister’s birthday.
The 28-year-old has rarely been to the pitch on March 11 in the past five years, missing practical suspensions in 2015 and 2016, before suffering even more convenient injuries – some might say – in 2018 and 2019.
But this time around, Neymar apparently doesn’t need an excuse to miss any action in March, like Spanish radio El Larguero report that he may benefit from some form of extended leave from former Spurs boss Pochettino.
Indeed, the Argentinian admitted he was considering allowing Neymar to celebrate his sister Rafaella Santos’ birthday with his family, saying that while tactics are important for a coach, “player management is fundamental” .
“When the time comes, we’ll see. It’s important to be very good at tactics, but management is fundamental, ”said Pochettino. “When I started training I told myself that I was going to be adamant and that I would not let go.
“But after 12 years, I realize that I am more flexible each time and that I like to negotiate everything. Today, the new generation likes to give its opinion, to be listened to. Discussion must take precedence.
“Nothing is gained by imposing things. We must discuss, negotiate. ”
Neymar did play on March 11 last season, in PSG’s vital 2-0 victory over Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League. This time, the Parisians are faced with the small matter of facing Barcelona on March 10, before hosting Nantes four days later.
The forward is unlikely to pass up the opportunity to challenge his former employers in the Champions League round of 16 second leg, but he will likely spy on the opportunity to return home after the game and avoid the shock of Ligue 1, less appetizing.