PSG star Neymar positive for COVID-19

Paris St Germain's Neymar reacts during the French League Cup final. The Brazilian superstar has contracted COVID-19, according to French sources. (Reuters/File Photo)
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Updated 02 September 2020

PSG star Neymar positive for COVID-19

  • After their loss to Bayern Munich in Champions League, several PSG players took a few days off in Ibiza

PARIS: Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar, the world’s most expensive footballer, has tested positive for coronavirus, sources told AFP on Wednesday.

The 28-year-old Brazilian has COVID-19 as well as his Argentinian teammates Angel Di Maria and Leandro Paredes, the same anonymous sources said.

PSG has not played since losing to Bayern Munich in the Champions League final last month. It will start its French league campaign on Sept. 10.

After their loss to Bayern, several PSG players took a few days off in Ibiza. L’Équipe identified the players who tested positive as Neymar, Di Maria and Paredes, noting that they were part of the trip to the Spanish island.

The club said in a statement that the three players are now “subject to the appropriate health protocol" and that the rest of the squad and coaching staff “will continue to undergo tests in the coming days."

The first game of the French soccer season was postponed last month because of an outbreak of COVID-19 cases at Marseille after the southern club confirmed three positive cases among its first-team players and staff.

Several other French clubs have been hit by the virus, including Montpellier, Rennes and Lyon.

French soccer was widely criticized in the spring after it was the highest profile European league to end the season early during the pandemic rather than try to restart. The standings were declared final with PSG retaining its title and Marseille second.


Transfers are out of my hands, says Liverpool manager Klopp

Updated 23 January 2021

Transfers are out of my hands, says Liverpool manager Klopp

  • Liverpool suffers alarming loss of form going five league games without a win

LIVERPOOL, UK: Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said whether any new players come in the January transfer window will not be up to him as he does not hold the purse strings.

The German may be keen for fresh blood as the champions have suffered an alarming loss of form going five league games without a win.

Thursday’s 1-0 loss to Burnley ended a 68-game unbeaten home run and left them six points adrift of leaders Manchester United — who they play in an FA Cup fourth round tie on Sunday.

Injury has deprived Klopp of key central defender Virgil van Dijk but it is up front where their previously irresistible forward have failed to fire.

It is seven hours and 18 minutes since they last found the net in the league.

“Of course somebody else is making the decisions,” he said laughing at his press conference on Friday.

“It was always like this.

“We discuss the situation pretty much on a daily basis, could we improve something or not and we make recommendations but I cannot spend the money.

“I never did.”

Klopp said he would be taking Sunday’s game at Old Trafford seriously against a side they drew 0-0 in the league at Anfield last Sunday.

Klopp left the likes of Mo Salah and Robert Firmino on the bench against Burnley although both came on eventually.

“It is a different competition and yes we want to go through and for that we have to play really well,” he said.

“United are in a good moment and have got the results so far but we are ready 100 percent.”

Klopp had said in the immediate aftermath of the Burnley match that seeing the unbeaten home run end was “a massive punch in the face.”

However, on Friday the 53-year-old said it was about looking forwwards.

“Sixty-eight matches unbeaten is an incredible number,” he said.

“I never spoke about the number (referring to the home unbeaten run) but now it is onto a new series.”

Klopp said the players should not take the blame for what did not go right against Burnley.

“We go again, no doubt about that,” he said.

“I said what I thought after the game.

“When things don’t work out as we want them to then there’s an issue.

“The issue is that I didn’t tell the boys things clearly enough.

“I have to change the way I tell the boys (these things).”