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Neymar back in Brazil to rest and relax after injury - Paris Saint-Germain boss Thomas Tuchel

ESPN FC's Craig Burley assesses potential moves for Mauricio Pochettino, Adrien Rabiot, Isco, Mauro Icardi and more in Transfer Rater.

Paris Saint-Germain coach Thomas Tuchel has said Neymar has returned to Brazil with his permission and will not be part of Saturday's Ligue 1 home game against Nantes.

Neymar has played with an injury in recent weeks, including in the Champions League wins over Liverpool and Red Star Belgrade, and Tuchel said the 26-year-old needed to "rest and relax."

"Neymar has travelled to Brazil with my permission," he told a news conference on Friday. "He was injured, and we risked him against Red Star in Belgrade.

"He wants to play each match, but we must be smart right now and take no unnecessary chances with his injury. He needs to rest and relax for two weeks."

Midfielder Adrien Rabiot, meanwhile, has moved closer to leaving, but asked whether dropping him for the win at Marseille in October had been a turning point, Tuchel said: "There was no falling out.

"The decision regarding Kylian [Mbappe] and Adrien in Marseille was a necessary one. It was a big match, and Julian [Draxler] played well. He took his opportunity to show what he can do, so it was nothing to do with Adrien.

"Adrien lost confidence and then his place because Julian played well. With Adrien, it is no longer a sporting situation. It is a club decision, and I respect it."

Tuchel said he would like to see his midfield options strengthened during the January window.

"That is very simple -- I would like a second Marco or a second Marquinhos," he said. "However, first of all, we need to find this person. We want guys with good mentality, and that is hard to find."

Asked about goalkeeper Alphonse Areola's recent decision to sign a contract extension until 2023, Tuchel praised the youth academy graduate.

"Alphonse is very important for us," he said. "He has always said: 'This is my club -- I want to stay.' It is really important to have guys like that -- it is a strong signal."

Areola, who said the coach had played a major role in convincing him to pledge his long-term future to PSG, said he had not discussed Rabiot's situation with his teammate.

"I have not really spoken with Adrien about it," he said. "It is between him and the club, so it is not my business."

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