BEVERLY HILLS, May 03, (THEWILL) – For one of the most important fixtures of the season for Ligue 1 champions, Paris Saint-Germain, Les Parisiens have included the name of proficient French striker Kylian Mbappe in the squad sheet, even though, as THEWILL reported on Friday last week, there has been no word on any substantial improvement to the right calf injury he sustained.
After PSG’s first leg home loss to Manchester City in the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League, Mbappe complained of discomfort in his calf. Consequently, Mauricio Pochettino left the forward out of their equally important weekend tie against Lens, which they won with goals from Marquinhos and Neymar.
Out of an abundance of caution, it was believed that Mbappe will also not be forced to participate in the reverse away UCL fixture on Tuesday at the Etihad Stadium but information on the squad from the official PSG website reveal that Mbappe has been included and will travel with the team.
The initial reaction will be to believe that the player recovered in remarkable time and is fit enough to feature but video evidence of the 22-year-old walking with a noticeable limp on his right leg, captured by Le Parisien, suggest that the problem persists nonetheless.
The footage came from a video of Mbappe arriving at the airport with the rest of the team, making it highly unlikely that he will pass a late fitness test to be declared sound enough to start against City. He may very likely not have any part to play actively at all for Pochettino, which makes it questionable why he was listed.
Pochettino knows that with his side trailing by a goal, their prospects of progressing will be dependent on scoring twice to offset the double City netted in Paris. Mbappe could have been a reliable player to deliver on that but, in his absence, the entire team will have to find a way to make it happen to banish the ghosts of repeated failure to clinch Europe’s biggest League prize.