By Tim Stannard
Neymar returns in time to lift another prize in today's Classique-themed Trophee des Champions clash against Marseille
Two things are pretty much guaranteed for a coach of PSG. The first, as Thomas Tuchel and Unai Emery experienced, is an abrupt ending. The second, is the chance to stuff that managerial resume with honors and titles.
The recently departed Thomas Tuchel came away from his spell at PSG with two Ligue 1 titles, a Coupe de France win and a Coupe de la Ligue victory. His predecessor, Unai Emery, managed one league title, two Coupe de France wins and two Coupe de La Ligue trophies.
Mauricio Pochettino has been coaching at a top level on and off since 2009 at Espanyol, Southampton and Tottenham but the trophy shelf in his bathroom is filled with scented candles rather than trinkets. Probably.
Just 12 days into the Argentinean's tenure at PSG, Pochettino has the chance to break 12 years of trophy-less slogging with today's 2020 Trophee des Champions match against Marseille.
The Trophee Champions is the annual battle between the reigning Ligue 1 winner and the Coupe de France champion. Seeing as PSG cannot play itself, Marseille - as the team that finished second in Ligue 1 last season - are the rivals for today's battle.
All the focus will be in Lens in a match-up that doubles up as the 'former Spurs coach derby' with Andres Villas-Boas leading the way for Marseille these days.
The sniff of another trophy win has accelerated Neymar's progress from injury. The Brazilian was disappointed to miss out on the Brest action on Saturday, but is in today's squad to face Marseille. While it is unsure if Neymar will start, Poch was confident that Kylian Mbappe was raring to go at least - "Kylian is in perfect condition."
The Trophee des Champions between PSG and Marseille is live on beIN SPORTS from 2:50PM ET.
Atletico Madrid starts pulling ahead in title race
Real Madrid and Barcelona are currently taking a time-out from LaLiga and are dueling in the four-team Spanish Super Cup tournament. Barcelona are in action today against Real Sociedad with Real Madrid taking on Athletic Club on Thursday in the two semifinals.
But when the Primera pair return, the two teams will find that the LaLiga standings are looking a little less rosy. Well, Real Madrid in particular. They have never looked good for Barcelona.
At the start of Tuesday, table-topping Atletico Madrid had a one-point lead over Real Madrid with three matches in hand. One of those has now been played, and a 2-0 win over Sevilla puts Atletico four points clear.
LaLiga takes a break next weekend but returns midweek (without Real Madrid and Barcelona) but Atletico will be at Eibar with the chance to go seven points clear of Real Madrid with one game in hand and 10 over Barcelona with one in hand.
Diego Simeone said on Tuesday after the match that the title was pretty much in the bag for the Rojiblancos. Well. Not really.
He fudged - "I am delighted that the players are growing and competing in every game. The rest will be a consequence of this." So far, Atletico have won 12 of the team's past 13 matches in LaLiga. The only outlier was the the derby defeat against Real Madrid.
The Sports Burst live show will be taking the temperature once again of Atletico Madrid's title chances. Head to our beIN SPORTS USA Facebook page at 12PM ET to join in the conversation.
Cry me a River in Copa Libertadores controversy
Close, so very, very close.
The mission for River Plate in the Copa Libertadores semifinal, second-leg looked almost impossible on Tuesday night. Go to Sao Paulo, take on the free-scoring Palmeiras and overcome a 3-0 deficit from the first-leg. The Argentineans were just a single goal away from achieving that aim.
In fact, in one dimension River Plate did achieve that aim with three chances to equalize being ruled out by VAR. The first looked like a perfectly good goal being cancelled out by the VAR due a narrow offside earlier in the move.
The second was a penalty call that was cancelled out by VAR while the spot pick was about to be taken. The third was another penalty call, but a decision was taken that there was another offside from an earlier move. River Plate were also sent down to ten men for a second soft yellow card for Roberto Rojas.
It's fair to say it wasn't River's night.
Boca Juniors will be hoping for a little bit more luck than River Plate in their own trip to Sao Paulo on Wednesday. The mission is a little simpler with the first-leg of their semifinal at 0-0 against Santos.
That match is live on beIN SPORTS from 5:05PM ET, directly after the Trophee des Champions and is followed by the Copa Sudamericana semifinal second-leg between Lanus and Velez Sarsfield with the home side holding a 1-0 advantage.