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Paris Saint-Germain striker Neymar was excluded from Wednesday’s Champions League game against Barcelona after failing to recover from a thigh problem in time

The 29-year-old Neymar has fallen out of 10 since his injury in the French Cup victory against second division team Caen in February

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The Brazilian international returned to light training a few days ago, but PSG confirmed on Tuesday that this week’s second leg against Barca in the Champions League round of 16 comes too early

Neymar, who joined PSG from Barca in 2017 for a world record of € 222million, also missed the Camp Nou first leg when Kylian Mbappe scored a hat-trick when the French champions won 4-1

“He’s very sad,” said PSG coach Mauricio Pochettino when Neymar was denied a chance to play against his former side last month

“He was really looking forward to going to Barcelona. He loves Barcelona. He’s a player who loves these games, he’s made for them”

Sources have told ESPN that Pochettino was considering adding him to the roster but didn’t want to take any chances, and Neymar agreed with the decision

Neymar has suffered regular injuries during this phase of the season and missed the Champions League eliminations against Real Madrid and Manchester United in 2018 and 2019 due to fitness problems

However, he was fit for the final stages of last year’s competition and helped PSG reach the final, where they were beaten 1-0 by Bayern Munich

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