PSG hopes for Mbappe to return in Champions League against Bayern
Paris Saint Germain is hoping that superstar Kylian Mbappe can return in the midst of a terrible season for the French team.
Paris Saint-Germain is hoping Kylian Mbappe can make a rapid recovery from injury and feature in Tuesday's Champions League showdown with Bayern Munich following a terrible season.
Mbappe was ruled out for three weeks after suffering a thigh injury in a game at Montpellier on February 1 but he returned to the training pitch Sunday and again on Monday.
The 22-man team for the opening leg of the round of 16 at Parc des Princes included the France superstar, indicating that he will participate in some capacity against the German powerhouses.
There are no assurances that the 24-year-old, who scored seven goals in six games during the group stage, will even be picked as a replacement for the game, according to PSG coach Christophe Galtier.
"He trained well and the feedback is positive but it is not yet sure that he will be on the team sheet. We will look at things tomorrow morning," Galtier told reporters on Monday.
Prior to PSG's announcement that the France superstar wouldn't be ready for the first leg, Bayern coach Julian Nagelsmann had claimed the French club was engaging in mind tricks.
"I am assuming and anticipating that he is going to start. It is my job as head coach to be prepared for him playing and to try to prevent him from damaging us," Nagelsmann, who is without the injured Sadio Mane, said in Paris on Monday.
Galtier, however, refuted claims that PSG was considering using Mbappe as a substitute in order to intimidate their opponents in a rematch of the Germans' 1-0 victory against PSG in the 2020 Champions League final in Lisbon.
"If he is on the teamsheet it will be to play, but I don't know how long it would be for," said the coach.
Lionel Messi and Marco Verratti were also named in the squad after sitting out PSG's 3-1 defeat at Monaco on Saturday, their second consecutive loss and fourth in 10 games in 2023.
There have also been concerns about Bayern's performance, yet they have only suffered one loss all year and lead the Bundesliga.
PSG's collapse has elevated the possibility of the club being eliminated from the Champions League again too soon.
In four of the previous six seasons, including the most recent one against eventual champions Real Madrid, they were eliminated from the competition in the final 16.