Thomas Tuchel confirmed that he has given Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar permission to return to Brazil to continue his rehabilitation from injury.
Neymar has struggled with a groin issue in recent weeks and was a doubt for the decisive Champions League clash with Red Star Belgrade, before starring in the victory that took PSG through to face Manchester United in the next round.
🎙️Ahead of tomorrow's match against @FCNantes,@TTuchelofficial told the press: "@neymarjr always wants to play. We don't want to take any chances with his injury, which is why he went on vacation earlier. "#PSGlive pic.twitter.com/0h0gy4KKdM— Paris Saint-Germain (@PSG_English) December 21, 2018
The world's most expensive player then declared himself "back to 100 per cent" in an interview with the club's official website this week.
But head coach Tuchel is not prepared to take a risk with a key man and has instead allowed Neymar to travel home to Brazil, missing the side's final match of 2018 against Nantes on Saturday.
"Neymar has gone to Brazil with my permission," Tuchel told a pre-match news conference. "He played injured against Red Star. It was a risk.
"We are happy that things have not got any worse after the game. Ney always wants to play, but this is not the time to take risks."
Neymar suffered a fractured foot in February and was absent as PSG crashed out of the Champions League against Real Madrid the following month.