Champions League digest: PSG star Neymar set to miss Real Madrid clash
Uefa reveals changes to next season’s qualifying format and VAR is ruled out
Neymar suffers fractured metatarsal
Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar is likely to miss next week’s Champions League clash against Real Madrid after he suffered a double injury on Sunday.
The £200m striker fractured a metatarsal and sprained his ankle during PSG’s 3-0 victory against Marseille in Ligue 1. Sky Sports reports that the Brazilian was stretchered off “in tears” at the Parc des Princes following a challenge by Bouna Sarr.
Sky says that Neymar is expected to be ruled out of the Champions League round of 16 second leg against Real Madrid in Paris on 6 March. PSG are 3-1 down in the tie and Neymar’s injury is a huge blow to their European hopes. The BBC reports that PSG “did not indicate” how long Neymar would be out for, but Sky says he should recover “before the end of the season and the World Cup”.
Qualifying to change next season
Uefa has announced changes for next season’s Champions League and Europa League qualifying rounds.
The new system, which includes an extra stage, is part of the two competitions’ “evolution”, Uefa said on its website.
Key changes include:
No VAR for the Champions League
The BBC reports that next season’s Champions League will not use video assistant referees (VAR).
Uefa president Aleksander Ceferin called VAR “confusing” and said it should not be “rushed” in for the Champions League.
Ceferin said: “Fans see the VAR screen all the time but nobody knows how it works. We will not use it in the Champions League next season. For me, it might be a good project but we shouldn’t rush it.”