This article was first published yesterday in our bespoke Sports newsletter The Fixture. You can sign up in seconds to receive it straight to your inbox every weekday here.  

If you believe in the old adage that bad news comes in threes then Paris Saint-Germain might just be due a change in fortune against Bayern Munich later this evening. First there was the Champions League first leg defeat at home to the Bavarians in which the Parisians inferiority complex against the Germans was again present as their poor form against the Bundesliga champions extended to five defeats in seven; then came news that a preliminary investigation was being opened against wing back Achraf Hakimi after a 23-year-old woman went to the police and accused him of rape; a third bombshell arrived when it was confirmed at the start of this week that Brazilian superstar Neymar would miss tonight's return leg against Bayern having been ruled out for the rest of the season. The 31-year-old has suffered a number of ailments since his E222m transfer from Barcelona in 2017. The trigger for his latest injury came in PSG’s 4-3 home win over Lille on February 19, a game in which he was carried off.

The loss of Neymar, who has scored 18 goals and registered 17 assists this season, is of course a major blow for PSG as the club seeks the Holy Grail of a first ever Champions League. Lest there was any doubt about how much the club owners would like to lift the trophy further proof of that desire could be seen when the emir of Qatar was present for that first leg against the Bavarians in Paris three weeks ago.

There is a sense that with Qatari eyes trained on the potential takeover of Manchester United it has left plenty of questions swirling around their once-favourite plaything, even if there is plenty to suggest that a different investment vehicle to the one that owns PSG will be involved in the purchase of the Old Trafford club.

More than E1 billion has been lavished on new players since Qatar Sports Investment took over the club in 2011 and while there have been plenty of domestic pots and gongs raised aloft at the Parc des Princes, the biggest prize has remained elusive. Successive coaches have habitually paid for that failure with their jobs with Carlo Ancelotti the only PSG head coach not to have been sacked when he departed for Real Madrid in 2013.

Failure in Europe has spelled the end for the four successive PSG managers who have followed Ancelotti (notably Thomas Tuchel won the Champions League a couple of months later with Chelsea following his dismissal in Paris). When the incumbent Christophe Galtier was unveiled last summer it was to the sound of sloganism with Nasser Al-Khelaifi declaring: “We have a new era to start, a new atmosphere, new objectives.” Yet there are already signs that all is not well with the new regime which is headed by sporting director Luis Campos. The French champions had not lost three straight games since 2011 but managed that dubious feat last month and have already racked up five defeats which, in early March, is a total more than all of last season's.

There is talk that Galtier is under pressure following an early exit from the French Cup and that chatter might intensify should a Champions League departure prove forthcoming in Munich this season.

Equally, of course, all of the noise could disappear quite quickly with a win tonight. PSG have moved eight points clear at the top of Ligue 1 since their first-leg reverse at the hands of the Germans following three wins on the spin. Perhaps demonstrating that not all bad news comes in threes.