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Thomas Tuchel Refuses to Rule Out Neymar PSG Exit: 'Anything Could Happen'

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistAugust 30, 2019

Paris Saint-Germain's German head coach Thomas Tuchel (L) speaks with Paris Saint-Germain's Brazilian forward Neymar (C) during a training session in Shenzhen on August 1, 2019, ahead of the French Trophy of Champions football match between Rennes and Paris Saint-Germain. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / AFP)        (Photo credit should read FRANCK FIFE/AFP/Getty Images)
FRANCK FIFE/Getty Images

Paris Saint-Germain manager Thomas Tuchel has said "anything could happen" in regard to Neymar's potential exit from the club this summer.

Neymar is strongly linked with a return to Barcelona leading up to Monday's European transfer deadline. The 27-year-old left Catalonia for Paris in a world-record €222 million (£200 million) deal in 2017.

Tuchel spoke at a press conference on Thursday and left it open as to whether Neymar would still be part of his squad come Tuesday:

"His situation has not changed since the Toulouse match.

"All I can say is that I am calm, relaxed. The world of football can be crazy. Now is not the time to lose our heads. Anything could happen. Perhaps nothing will change.

"It is a bit late to impose a deadline. We will see on September 2."

The forward has yet to feature for PSG this season, and Tuchel stated he won't be involved in their league visit to Metz on Friday, as Goal shared:

Goal @goal

Even Thomas Tuchel sounds sick of the Neymar saga 😂 https://t.co/zJshI3Eryf

The Blaugrana already spent almost a combined €200 million (£181 million) on the signings of Antoine Griezmann and Frenkie de Jong this summer. Neymar's reported desire to leave Paris works in their favour, however.

Spanish journalist Guillem Balague recently appeared on BBC 5 Live Sport and said a breakthrough was made between Barca and PSG, who agreed the player is worth €200 million (h/t BBC Sport):

BBC 5 Live Sport @5liveSport

🤔 Real Madrid or Barcelona @GuillemBalague gives us the latest in the Neymar saga 🎧Listen to the Football Daily👇 ⚽️📲https://t.co/aPLY25BjAt #bbcfootball https://t.co/yJxQjoXuA8

It's understood the players Barcelona have offered in part exchange to lower the cash cost have rejected the move to Paris. They are said to be midfielder Ivan Rakitic, centre-back Jean-Clair Todibo and winger Ousmane Dembele (on a season-long loan).

Balague added: "It is not done. There is still a big bridge to be crossed because none of the three players have said they want to go. Dembele's agent recently said he is '200 per cent' staying at Barcelona."

Neymar would leave France with a prolific record—should the move materialise—having scored 51 goals in 58 appearances for PSG. He also helped them to clinch back-to-back Ligue 1 titles, as well as complete a domestic treble in his maiden season.

The club failed to progress past the UEFA Champions League round of 16 in either of his seasons at the Parc des Princes, however.

Statman Dave recently highlighted how the Brazilian could be put to better use in Catalonia, citing his statistics during his most recent season in La Liga:

Statman Dave @StatmanDave

Neymar in La Liga 2016/2017: • most take-ons per game (5.6) • most fouls won per game (4.2) • most chances created per game (3) Reportedly on the verge of returning. 👀 https://t.co/BHCUKDe8ls

PSG don't appear likely to agree a sale without receiving quality players and a significant transfer fee from Barca in return, but Neymar's Camp Nou comeback looks closer than ever.