Neymar ‘Is The Leader We Want’ – Tuchel

Ahead of Paris Saint-Germain’s Coupe de France match against FC Lorient, manager Thomas Tuchel spoke to the media about a number of different topics, including the defensive efforts of Neymar Jr.

The Brazilian’s effort has been a hot topic as of late due to his role in the 4-4-2 formation where he is required to track back and help defensively in order for the attack-minded formation to work.

Tuchel was asked about his star’s recent performances and offered up some high praise (via Le Parisien):

“Ney, the best thing is to watch his games. It is super-important, super-decisive. He works defensively, closes spaces. He is the leader we want. It’s really a good time for him. The challenge is to continue like this, to keep the spirit and the way of working. It’s good, but it’s just the beginning. We are in January.”

While singing Neymar’s praises, Tuchel was quick to remind everyone that for his team to be successful this season, it requires a team effort.

“You know that I am convinced that football is a collective effort. As I often say: we attack together, we defend together. If we do that, we are a very dangerous team. If we don’t, we are a normal team. And with a normal team, we don’t do great things.”

Neymar isn’t the captain of PSG but by setting the example on the pitch that every player must help win the ball back and defend, the Brazilian is acting like a captain.

After a recent win over AS Saint-Étienne in the Coupe de la Ligue, Kylian Mbappé spoke about Neymar’s infectious effort level per

“When we talk about changing our ways, here it is: Neymar tackling! That speaks to everyone.”

The true test of Neymar’s leadership and PSG’s 4-4-2 formation will be on February 18 when PSG faces Borussia Dortmund in the UEFA Champions League. Les Parisiens will be looking to advance past the Round of 16 for the first time in three seasons.

It won’t be easy though. Lucien Favre’s squad has a potent attack and if PSG isn’t prepared to defend, they could get run off the Signal Iduna Park pitch.

Neymar appears to have turned a corner this season. Reports indicate that he is open to signing an extension at PSG and he’s happier than he’s ever been in the French capital.

If the season turns out to be a success for PSG and Neymar, the Brazilian could get his wish next season and be named captain.

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Tags Borussia Dortmund Kylian Mbappé Neymar Thomas Tuchel
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