Paris St-Germain forward Neymar

Paris St-Germain forward Neymar was told “don’t go blubbering” after he left the pitch in tears having suffered a fractured metatarsal.

Neymar was fouled three times in a few seconds by Moataz Zemzemi during PSG’s 2-0 French Cup win over Strasbourg.

The 26-year-old responded by doing a “rainbow flick” over the head of Zemzemi but had to come off injured.

“It’s Neymar’s style, but don’t come and complain when you get kicked,” said Strasbourg’s Anthony Goncalves.

“He is a great player, I respect him. He can enjoy himself but don’t come blubbering afterwards.”

However, PSG manager Thomas Tuchel was unhappy with the comments by some of the Strasbourg players and coach suggesting Neymar’s behaviour provoked his opponents to cause the injury.

“It was a situation where he was fouled three times, one after the other Pakistan news. The referee didn’t give anything. He twisted his foot,” said Tuchel.

PSG said Neymar had suffered a “reactivation of the lesion of the fifth right metatarsal”, adding that treatment would depend on how the injury heals in the next few days.

The former Barcelona forward, who has scored 20 goals in all competitions so far this season for the Ligue 1 leaders, injured the same ankle last February and missed the rest of the season, only returning to fitness in time to play for Brazil at the World Cup.

“Ney is worried, because it is the same foot, the same place,” added Tuchel.

“When you protect players who respect others, there’s no problem”

Strasbourg manager Thierry Laurey described Neymar as a “phenomenon” in his post-match comments, but also said there was “nothing malicious” in his players’ actions.

“There are moments when you have to play tough, it’s as simple as that,” Laurey said.

“There are moments when, if you go over the limit a little bit, you have to expect that you are going to get a kick or two.

“I didn’t ask my players to go and kick Neymar, but I understand why the players had had enough of someone who was looking to tease and taunt them a bit.”

Strasbourg coach Thierry Laurey has accused Neymar of “mocking” the opposition

The 54-year-old Frenchman conceded players [like Neymar] need protection but that his players “grafted for 90 minutes” to “try and stop” him.

“When you protect players who respect others, there’s no problem,” Laurey added

“For example, when you do a pass with your back [referring to Neymar in a match against Guingamp], when there’s no reason for it, then that’s mocking.

“I’ve seen plenty of PSG players other than Neymar who are very good at 5-0 up, but when it’s 0-0 they don’t show off like that.

“If Neymar plays in the same way against Manchester United [in their Champions League last 16 tie] he’ll get the same reaction. Don’t be surprised.”

Goals from Edinson Cavani and Angel di Maria sealed the victory over Strasbourg.

Meanwhile, PSG midfielder Marco Verratti is already doubtful for the first leg of their last-16 Champions League tie at Manchester United on 12 February after suffering an ankle injury during the 9-0 win over Guingamp on Saturday.

 

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