Paris Saint-Germain striker, Kylian Mbappe will have the chance to return tot he starting line up after being fit for the semi-finals of tonight’s Champions League semi-final against RB Leipzig in Lisbon.
The match will kick of 20:00 UK time at the Estádio da Luz tonight.
This was revealed by coach Thomas Tuchel during a press conference. The striker, who was a substitute in the 2-1 win over Atalanta has been struggling with an ankle injury in recent weeks. He was injured in the French Cup final against Saint-Etienne.
He was instrumental to their win after the Serie A side was looking likely to be the winner having held the French champions for 89 minutes. The 21-year-old inspired PSG to the late victory, by setting up the winner for Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting in injury time after Marquinhos had restored parity a minute earlier.
Kylian Mbappe good to go
With no complaint in the last six days, Mbappe has been training since despite playing for just 30 minutes against Atalanta. And during the sessions the teenage forward had no reaction and had work on fitness. For this reason, Tuchel said he can be in the starting line up.
“We will decide after training whether he can play 90 minutes.”
Mbappe, who shared 49 goals with Neymar this season has scored 30 goals in 35 appearances in all competitions this season, including five in eight in the Champions League.
Speaking further, the German tactician described Mbappe’s strike partner, Neymar as a different leader on the pitch.
With Mbappe returning to fitness, the potent attacking partnership with Brazilian forward, who has 19 goals in 25 starts this campaign will be hard to stop by the Bundesliga side.
The manager is therefore impressed with his leadership qualities.
“Since I arrived he has always been a leader. A different leader, not as everyone understands him, but with his qualities, his confidence, his courage in the field, his will to win,” said German Tuchel. He loves competition and you need that to be a leader.
“We also created a group with players like Ander Herrera, Pablo Sarabia, Keylor Navas, and others, guys who know very well how to live together, created a collective atmosphere. Perhaps this is the key to seeing Neymar on another level.”
The other player that could return is Argentine winger Angel di Maria following suspension. The club will however be without their first-choice goalkeeper, Keylor Navas, who is out with a thigh injury. Sergio Rico is likely to start.
Others that remain doubtful are Marco Veratti and Idrissa Gueye. Although the duo has started training, it seems they have missed fitness tests. The Senegalese has been battling muscle injury.
PSG will be playing their first European Cup/Champions League semi-final since 1995, having reached the last 16 for the previous three seasons and the quarter-finals four campaigns on the bounce before that.