Neymar Should Remain In Starting 11, Have Different Role, Loïc Tanzi Believes

Paris Saint-Germain came off an impressive 3-0 victory over Olympique de Marseille on Sunday at the Stade Vélodrome. Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe put together a performance that paused the “crisis” talk around the capital club. 

Messi had one goal and two assists, while Kylian Mbappé had a brace and one assist. The two found chemistry without Neymar Jr., who is out after suffering an ankle injury during the match against Lille OSC on Feb. 19. 

As a result, there are questions about Neymar being in the starting 11, but L’Equipe’s Loïc Tanzi believes that the 31-year-old shouldn’t be riding the bench but instead have a different role.  

“If PSG goes to the quarter-finals, will Christophe Galtier continue in this system (3-5-2) with Neymar?” Tanzi said on L’Equipe du Greg (h/t Canal Supporters). “I think the answer is yes. It’s just the Brazilian’s use that will be a bit different. We can remove Fabian Ruiz and put Neymar in the midfield instead. At the start of the season, Galtier constantly said that the balance of this team is Neymar, who brings it. 

“It is Neymar who allows Mbappé and Messi to stay in front and defend less; he is the one who would make the efforts in the middle. He has always done it well. PSG played very well in the first part of the season with the three [Mbappé, Messi and Neymar] in a system with three defenders. I don’t understand why they say that without Neymar, it’s easier. In [recently] lost matches, there weren’t all three on the pitch. And it is mainly due to the absence of Mbappé in this case.”

PSG faces FC Nantes on Saturday at the Parc des Princes; afterward, the squad can begin to look toward the matchup against Bayern Munich. It will be interesting to see whether Christophe Galtier will attempt to insert the Brazilian into the starting 11 or not rush him and let Messi and Mbappe continue their current form. 

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