Mbappe and Neymar train for Champions League as talks of rift simmer - in pictures

PSG take on Maccabi Haifa on Wednesday after unconvincing performance against Brest

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Paris Saint-Germain might have an unbeaten record so far this season but the French champions look like they are already beginning to feel the strain.

Neymar scored his 10th goal of the season to secure a 1-0 win over Brest in Ligue 1 on Saturday but PSG showed signs of fatigue and needed a second-half Gianluigi Donnarumma penalty save to cling on to victory.

It was a far cry from the flying start to the season that has included 5-0, 5-2, and 7-1 wins.

The victory over Brest did take PSG back to the top of the table, despite their least convincing performance of the season.

New manager Christophe Galtier will already be trying to keep his players fresh as the fixtures quickly mount up. The Brest game fell in between the 2-1 midweek Champions League win over Juventus and their next European assignment against Maccabi Haifa in Israel on Wednesday.

“It is always difficult to play on the back of a Champions League game. So much energy goes into these matches, physically as well as mentally,” Galtier told Amazon Prime.

“I wouldn't say we were trying to play within ourselves but there was maybe not the same desire to make the effort that we have seen so far this season.”

There is another issue that refuses to go away, with relations between Kylian Mbappe and Neymar still a cause for concern.

Reports suggest that the Brazilian is still unhappy with the way Mbappe has acted on and off the pitch, with tensions between the two came to fore earlier in the season.

Against Montpellier last month, Neymar insisted on taking the team's second penalty after Mbappe had missed the first. The Frenchman did not celebrate after Neymar converted the spot-kick.

Then against Juventus, Neymar appeared to be furious after Mbappe decided to take a shot rather than pass the ball for a tap-in during their Champions League clash. Galtier, though, insists the two maintain a good relationship.

Updated: September 13, 2022, 11:31 AM
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