PSG hopeful on Mbappe for Champions League, fearful over Verratti

Paris Saint-Germain are hopeful Kylian Mbappe will be fit for their Champions League quarterfinal against Atalanta on Aug. 12, but there is pessimism over the availability of Marco Verratti, sources have told ESPN.

Mbappe trained on his injured right ankle on Thursday in the hope that he can get fit in time for the game but Verratti suffered a calf injury during training on Wednesday.

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The France forward started running without the ball on Wednesday and didn't feel any pain on his ankle. On Thursday, sources told ESPN that he tried small change of direction to test his ankle even further with quite a positive outcome.

He has been doing a lot of treatment on his ankle, at the PSG training ground but also at his flat, including work in the swimming pool which is helping to get a quicker recovery.

On Wednesday after he his team beat Ligue 2 side Sochaux 1-0 with a much changed team, Thomas Tuchel gave the latest update on Mbappe's fitness.

"Kylian is trying everything but this is a Champions League quarterfinal guys, not a friendly," the German said. "And we have had a break for four or five months.

"Kylian is 24/7 in his recovery. Can he do it? If he does, can he have a great game? I don't really believe he could play against Atalanta. We will see if he can be on the bench.

"It is always the same. When we get to a Champions League match, there are always negative things. I don't know why."

As well as Mbappe being doubtful, Angel Di Maria is also suspended for the Atalanta clash while Juan Bernat and Thilo Kehrer have struggled with injuries in the build up to the game too. On top of that, Edinson Cavani, Thomas Meunier and Tanguy Kouassi have already left the club this summer.

Regarding Verratti, Tuchel said: "We are worried. He got a big kick on his calf. We will have to wait a bit and see with the doctor."

Verratti's calf will be assessed daily in the lead up to the game.. To be without the Italy international would be a huge blow for PSG. Verratti was outstanding in the win against Lyon in the League Cup final and is one of their most creative midfielders too.

PSG are flying to Faro in the south of Portugal on Saturday for a training camp before travelling to Lisbon to finish their preparation for the Atalanta game.