Kylian Mbappe is available for Paris Saint-Germain’s Ligue 1 clash with Clermont on Saturday but could be rested ahead of the Champions League trip to Newcastle.
The France striker was forced off early in the 4-0 win over Marseille last weekend with an ankle injury, and manager Luis Enrique must decide whether to risk him against a side bottom of the league.
Mbappe trained away from the rest of the squad on Thursday but returned with his teammates on Friday.
Kylian Mbappe continues to work towards a gradual recovery. He completed his individual training session on the field. pic.twitter.com/Ae9wUohbax
— Paris Saint-Germain (@PSG_English) September 28, 2023
“Kylian Mbappe trained with the team today, he is available,” Enrique said on PSG TV. “He’s had some treatment and some special training, but he’s fit to play.”
The defending champions have made a shaky start to the season, drawing with Lorient and Toulouse and losing to Nice, and are third in the table behind Brest and Nice heading into the weekend.
But the result in the match against big rivals Marseille, combined with the Champions League victory over Borussia Dortmund, changed the situation.
“Confidence comes with good results,” Enrique said. “At the beginning of the season we had some difficult results, but when you win everything is great and with victories the confidence grows.
“There are a lot of things that need to be improved. In the learning process there is always a stage at the beginning when you have a lot to learn.
“We are still at this stage. I have been very happy with the players since I took over, but we are still far from the level we want to reach in attack and defence.”
Clermont have picked up just one point from their first six matches, conceding 12 goals in the process, but Enrique believes that belies their quality.
“They don’t deserve to be at the bottom of the table,” he said. “They play good football, they work well and they had a very strong base last season. This is one of the best defensive teams.
“This is an important game because it will take place a few days before the Champions League away match. We must not give up and underestimate our opponents. It won’t be an easy game.”
We are all with you, Nuno, see you soon on the field! pic.twitter.com/CB5RiTY0tF
— Paris Saint-Germain (@PSG_English) September 29, 2023
Meanwhile, PSG announced on Friday that left-back Nuno Mendes is expected to miss a further four months after undergoing hamstring surgery in Finland.
The 21-year-old Portugal international suffered an injury in July and surgery is now considered his best option for recovery.
Enrique said: “As for Nuno Mendes, we have to be careful with all this.
“We have enough strength, but we need to find solutions because the season is long.”