UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
Kylian Mbappe and Edinson Cavani have lost the race to be fit for Paris Saint-Germain’s Champions League visit of Real Madrid, the French champions confirmed on Monday.
Mbappe injured a thigh and Cavani his hip last month, and PSG said the two strikers will resume the full training by the end of the week after revealing they would miss Wednesday’s clash at the Parc des Princes.
PSG will also be without Neymar, who scored an added time winner against Strasbourg in his first start of the season on Sunday, as he has to serve a three-match suspension in the Champions League for insulting the referee following his side’s elimination by Manchester United last season.
PSG have Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting and recently arrived Mauro Icardi as options in the centre of attack.
Similarly, Real Madrid have also ruled out their defender Marcelo from the Group A clash at Paris St. Germain on Wednesday after sustaining a back injury, the club said.
“After the tests carried out today (Monday) on our player Marcelo by the Real Madrid medical services, he has been diagnosed with a post-traumatic cervicodorsal injury,” Madrid said in a statement on Monday, without specifying how long he would be out.
The Brazilian, set to be replaced at left back by Ferland Mendy as the record 13-time winners’ make their European bow, joins the long list of injuries suffered by Madrid this season.
Isco, Luka Modric, Marco Asensio and Fede Valverde will all miss the game along with suspended duo Sergio Ramos and Nacho Fernandez.
In London, Frank Lampard will be proud to be leading Chelsea back into the Champions League but will be without defender Antonio Rudiger for Tuesday’s clash with Valencia at Stamford Bridge.
The club’s record scorer is preparing for his first game in the competition as a manager, having replaced Maurizio Sarri.
“Toni is injured. He’s bothered a small groin problem that he’s been carrying for a few weeks and will have a scan later today,” Lampard told a news conference on Monday.
Germany international Rudiger played his first game of the season at the weekend but was forced off at halftime against Wolverhampton Wanderers with a recurrence of the groin injury.
Lampard is also without fellow defender Emerson Palmieri while midfielders N’Golo Kante and Callum Hudson-Odoi are not yet match-fit despite returning from injuries.
Chelsea did not feature in the Champions League last season but won the Europa League under Italian Sarri before he parted ways with the London club in the close season to join Juventus.
Lampard, scorer of one of the penalties in the shootout against Bayern in Munich in 2012 when Chelsea memorably won the Champions League for the first and so far only time, said he was looking forward to a return to Europe’s elite competition.
However, the former England midfielder is under no illusions about the size of the task, with Chelsea in group H alongside Valencia, last season’s semifinalists Ajax Amsterdam and Lille.
“I’m very proud as I had multiple incredible nights, and some bad ones, in the Champions League,” Lampard said.
“It’s the ultimate in club football for me. There is something about the European nights at Stamford Bridge. I’m very excited but what matters most is the result.”