PSG confirmed on Wednesday that the Brazilian superstar is to undergo surgery in his home country before the end of this week, ruling him out against Real but also for the foreseeable future.
Paris Saint-Germain chairman and CEO Nasser Al-Khelaifi insists that the French capital outfit can and will beat Real Madrid in the second leg of their Champions League round of 16 matchup to advance to the quarterfinals, despite losing Neymar to surgery.
Speaking in the mixed zone after a 3-0 Coupe de France quarterfinal win over bitter rivals Marseille, Al-Khelaifi praised Neymar and his father’s behavior since the injury and stated his confidence in Unai Emery and his players to overturn a 3-1 first leg deficit.
“Am I annoyed? Not at all,” said the Qatari supremo. “You are always looking for controversy. We remain very strong. I thank his father, who wants to stay with us until the Real Madrid match. We are a family and he is a gentleman. He was here, at the game, he is there for his son and his club, he is a great man.
“Real? Of course we believe. If not, why even bother to play? We have a team that can beat Real. It is an important match, but the players are solid — as they showed here. Everybody is ready, and they want to play, that is the most important thing.
“We will qualify in the Champions League, the supporters and the players together. We will go through. I repeat, we have the players and the team for it.”