Neymar has once more been overlooked by Paris Saint-Germain coach Thomas Tuchel, who left the Brazilian out of his squad to face Toulouse on Sunday. The Brazilian forward is yet to appear for his club in the 2019-20 season, after incurring an injury prior to the Copa America and reporting back late for pre-season training in July. PSG have played twice in their defence of the Ligue 1 title, beating Nimes 3-0 before suffering a shock defeat at the hands of Rennes. Article continues below Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream And, as they return to Parc des Princes for their latest clash, the champions will again have to take the field without the world’s most expensive player. Neymar was not included amongst the 19 players Tuchel called up to take on Toulouse , with his name listed in PSG’s ‘absent’ group with the likes of Ander Herrera, Julian Draxler and Thilo Kehrer, who are recovering from injuries. With just over a week to go before the transfer window closes in Europe the coach is not willing to disrupt his side by calling up the forward, who remains in the middle of a tug of war between Real Madrid and Barcelona while PSG hold out for a deal that reflects their valuation of his services. “Neymar can play if the situation between him and the club is clear tomorrow,” Tuchel told a press conference on Saturday.”He is ready to play, but today the situation is not clear, maybe it will be tomorrow.”The Neymar situation is unsettling, it helps nobody.”Everyone is used to this sort of situation surrounding Neymar. The same thing happened when he was injured. It is normal with the biggest stars.”Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane also alluded to the stand-off with Neymar, who has made no secret of his wish to leave Parc des Princes this summer after two years at PSG. “I’m working with the players I have at my disposal and we have a game on Saturday,” Zidane said ahead of his side’s 1-1 draw with Valladolid.”Anything can happen until September 2, when the transfer window closes.”Some might come, some might leave. I want September 2 to come as soon as possible so there will be no more questions.”I am looking ahead to Saturday’s game, that’s what I’m concerned about right now.”
Football is a difficult business to get into and it’s not uncommon to hear individuals who have been through the system to say they were put through the wringer.It is a seriously competitive realm, particularly at the elite level, where miniscule variations in speed, strength and technique can make all the difference between earning a deal and not.The unforgiving nature of the selection process can be entirely demoralising for those who don’t manage to ride the conveyor belt from the youth academy into the first team and many players give up hope. Editors’ Picks Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Time for another transfer? Giroud’s Chelsea spell set to end like his Arsenal career However, there are avenues available to those who retain the dream of being a professional footballer, even if they happen to find themselves without a club.Goal brings you all you need to know if you suddenly find yourself at the end of a deal and another is not forthcoming, or if you’re desperately fighting to break into the system in the first place.How to get a trial with a football clubDepending on the level you feel you have the ability to play, there are a number of ways to get a trial with a football club but it is not always easy.The key is to play in games that are being watched by scouts or people associated with football clubs such as coaches or officials.1. Attend open football trialsOpen trial events are held across the world. These trials seek to help recently released or unattached footballers in their search for a new club by giving them a platform to showcase their abilities.In the United Kingdom, there are a variety of groups running such trials and tournaments, which scouts for clubs at all different levels attend.The AG Football Academy is run by former Chelsea youth player Godrey Torto and aims to help footballers earn pro contracts if they have fallen out of the game.UK Football Trials is another which holds events around the UK for players aged 10-14 and 15-28, while the PFSA Football Trials are run by the Professional Football Scouts Association.A similar industry exists in the United States and clubs themselves – even up to Major League Soccer level – often advertise invitations to ‘tryouts’ in an attempt to uncover the next hidden gem.However, it should be noted that there is usually a fee required in order to register and take part in the trials. That means it is a financial investment – or gamble, depending on your perspective.To give you an example of what it might involve, you can watch the open invitation football tournament BeNext in the video below.2. Ask a football club directlyAn obvious suggestion is to contact a club directly to ask for a trial. However, given the volume of people who want to play football for a living you should be prepared to be refused, or, more likely, ignored.Manchester United or Real Madrid, for example, have worldwide scouting networks and are likely to know every single player they should possibly recruit, so you’d probably be wasting your time contacting them.Nevertheless, you may have some luck if you look further down the football ladder to clubs who lack such resources and would therefore be more inclined to take a chance.While the chances of most clubs entertaining unsolicited requests for trials remain slim, there have been some unusual examples of it working – or, at least appearing to work.In 2019, for example, three-time League of Ireland champions Cork City made headlines when they entered into a Twitter wager with a Nigeria-based individual with aspirations of being a footballer.When the individual surpassed the target number of retweets on a post, they contacted him to attempt to arrange the trial.Well we didn’t expect that anyway pic.twitter.com/yu8uiLwv1L— Cork City FC (@CorkCityFC) August 31, 2019Stay fit & keep playing footballIf you want to keep your hopes of becoming a professional footballer alive after being released from a club it is imperative that you stay fit and look after your body.In order to do that it is advisable to stick to a strict exercise routine, adhere to a healthy diet and, of course, to play regular football.Joining a team on a temporary basis or simply playing five-a-side with your friends each week can help in that regard. The main thing is to stay fit – you want to be at your absolute peak during a trial.Look for a soccer scholarshipWhile it may not be the most direct route into professional football it is worth considering an application for a football scholarship.Getting a scholarship to play football has the added bonus of allowing you to achieve an education along with qualifications you can fall back on if things don’t work out in sport.Scouts are often in attendance at big university matches and, indeed, the University World Cup, which forms part of the World University Games.Not only that, MLS clubs keep close tabs on college soccer and select players through the SuperDraft.Find a football agentFinding an agent to represent you and state your case to potential employers can be a major help in the pursuit of a career in football.While you can scour the internet, social media and the papers for opportunities yourself, it can be very difficult to break ground in the industry if you don’t have contacts or can’t figure out who to speak to.Click here to find more tips on how to become a professional footballer Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.