Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar said he was concerned about injuring himself in the 7-0 friendly rout of Waasland-Beveren as the Ligue 1 holders stepped up their preparations for the Champions League quarter-finals.
Neymar, Kylian Mbappe and Mauro Icardi were all on target in PSG’s demolition of Belgian outfit Waasland-Beveren at Parc des Princes on Friday.
After Ligue 1 was ended prematurely in April amid the coronavirus pandemic and with the Champions League set to resume in August, PSG have returned to the field in a bid to be ready for the knockout tie against high-flying Atalanta – crushing Le Havre 9-0 last week.
PSG continued their flawless preparation at home to Waasland-Beveren in Paris, where Aleksandar Vukotic’s own goal put the hosts ahead in the 21st minute before Neymar converted a penalty seven minutes later.
Icardi and Neymar combined for an audacious penalty attempt in the 47th minute, while Mbappe, Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting’s brace and Loic Mbe Soh’s last-gasp effort completed the scoring in the second half.
Reflecting on the result, Neymar was asked about the aggressive nature of Waasland-Beveren and he told be in sports: “Yes we were a little scared. We are here for a friendly match so those types of things should not have been happening.
“We are here to prepare ourselves, but also to be careful. But us too, we gave them a little bit back, so there are no problems.”
Neymar added: “I was very happy to come back and play at home, with some fans as well. We are preparing little by little to get to the maximum then we will be in the finals [Champions League]. The rest is not very important.”
PSG head coach Thomas Tuchel, meanwhile, confirmed veteran defender Thiago Silva will remain captain until the end of his contract and the Champions League next month.
Silva, who renewed his contract to feature in the postponed Champions League, is set to leave PSG after eight years but the 35-year-old will keep the captain’s armband before departing.
“Thiago Silva remains the captain until the last day when he is on the ground,” Tuchel said post-match. “He’s my captain!”Dread