Paris Saint-Germain won past FC Nantes 1-0 on Saturday, but there was nothing untoward about the absence of the world's most expensive player, Neymar, according to coach Thomas Tuchel.
Neymar has enjoyed a fine second season at the Parc des Princes so far, scoring 11 goals and assisting five more in 12 games to help PSG open up a 13-point lead over nearest challengers LOSC at the top of the Ligue 1 Conforama standings.
Neymar last completed 90 minutes for PSG in the 4-1 UEFA Champions League win over Red Star Belgrade two weeks ago, with a groin injury since interrupting his progress, and coach Tuchel decided an early Christmas break for Neymar was best for all parties.
"Yes, he left with my permission," he said. "It's better that way (laughs). Ney played injured against Belgrade. It was a risk but it was super important to take the risk. We're glad that things weren't worse after that match."
"He wants to play every game, against Orleans and Nantes. It's always the same with him, but it's time to be smart and take no chances with this injury."