Thiago Silva says he's 'sure' Neymar will stay with PSG
Paris Saint-Germain captain Thiago Silva believes his teammate and compatriot Neymar will stay in the French capital this summer.
Speaking after Sunday's 2-1 win away at Nice in Ligue 1 and questioned on the Brazilian superstar's future after recent reports that he wants more money to stay at Parc des Princes, the skipper eventually responded with certainty.
"Neymar has a contract with PSG -- I hope that he will stay with us," Silva told Canal+. "This project is very strong, even if it sometimes takes a while to win, which is normal.
"We will stick together with Neymar. He is already making good progress in his rehabilitation back in Brazil -- he is already working very hard and at a high level.
"I hope that he will stay with us because we are much stronger with him. Do I hope or am I sure? I am sure."
Silva also praised his teammates for putting in a mammoth effort as they came from behind to win at Allianz Riviera through Angel Di Maria and Dani Alves goals.
"The team put in a lot of effort, just like our opponents," said the Brazil international. "It was an open game. We managed to score at the end of the match, which is very important for our season and the title -- we have to keep that mentality and keep on winning.
"We were strong mentally. We deserve this win, but Nice should be congratulated for their performance."
Coach Unai Emery was happy with all three points but admitted that the Champions League exit to Real Madrid has not been completely forgotten just yet.
"When you win, you forget things little by little," the Spaniard said. "However, it is true that something was still missing, so it was not completely forgotten. For me, the team continued to respond to the Real Madrid result here, like against Metz and Angers.
"It was a difficult match today, the kind of game we like to play, against an opponent that makes us defend for 90 minutes and makes us make a lot of challenges. We had the same kind of game last year -- this win is very good for us. The team played well today, I am happy.
"We have to keep going like that. I'm happy with all the players, congratulations to them."
Goalkeeper Alphonse Areola said the win in Nice bodes well ahead of the Coupe de la Ligue final in Bordeaux later this month.
"It was a great game between two good teams," the Frenchman said. "Nice managed to knock us out of our stride, but we were able to stay focused and solid. That's good.
"It was important to win before the international break, and especially to prepare for the Coupe de la Ligue final, which will come around quickly."
Alves, who scored PSG's second and winning goal, was delighted with his headed effort and pleased with the result.
"I showed an aspect of my game that few people knew about!" the Brazilian said of his goal. "It allowed me to think back to when I played as a kid, I was a forward and I scored a lot of goals from headers!
"It was a tough game against an opponent that played well and used the ball well. It was a good test after those of recent weeks. It is good to win here on a difficult pitch -- we are all very happy.
"Our objective is getting closer and closer. We have our destiny in our hands. We have to enjoy this moment, because the club did not manage to win the league last season."
PSG can still record a 100-point or greater Ligue 1 total, which they have never been able to achieve despite immense domestic domination under Qatari ownership.
Jonathan Johnson covers PSG and the French national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @Jon_LeGossip.