Paris Saint-Germain coach Thomas Tuchel and his superiors do not agree over Adrien Rabiot's status for the second half of the season, with the wantaway midfielder set to stay at Parc des Princes past the end of January, sources have told ESPN FC.
Rabiot, 23, has been frozen out of the senior setup since late 2018 after refusing to sign an extension to his contract, which expires at the end of this campaign. As a result, Tuchel has been deprived of the France international at a time of great need in midfield.
According to a source close to PSG, the German remains keen to have Rabiot reinstated as part of his squad if he Rabiot is still in the French capital by the end of this week and he has hinted a few times in public that he would like this option considered.
Midfield reinforcement has finally arrived in the form of Leandro Paredes from Zenit Saint Petersburg, but with Marco Verratti still working his way back to fitness (although returning to training imminently), natural central midfield options remain thin.
PSG are still in the hunt for Everton's Idrissa Gueye, who has reportedly handed in a transfer request, and the source said that the Ligue 1 giants will make late final attempts to persuade Borussia Dortmund to part with Julian Weigl, or Napoli to relinquish their grip on Allan.
If one of those three players signs later this week, then Tuchel's need for Rabiot is not as great and the former Dortmund and Mainz 05 boss' position with his superiors on the topic of the youth academy graduate will be weaker.
However, if Paredes is the sum total of Henrique's January dealings, which is not being ruled out in Paris, added the source, then Tuchel stands a better chance of getting his way on Rabiot with the 45-year-old keen to boast as strong a squad as possible and the Frenchman still a top talent.
Rabiot looked set to leave this month after talks over a new contract broke down with Henrique, a key factor in the Portuguese's highly likely departure between February and the end of this term, as PSG tried to cash in on the free-agent-to-be before it is too late.
Sources informed ESPN FC that Barcelona had agreed terms over a lucrative summer move with Rabiot earlier this month before they upped their bid for Ajax's Frenkie de Jong at the last minute to trump PSG and seemingly move on from Les Parisiens' No. 25 while he was pushing for an expedited Camp Nou switch.
Rabiot was unable to secure his early release, with Barca unwilling to stump up the extra money required to liberate him from the French capital and Bayern Munich remain the only club to have expressed concrete interest to both player and club this month.
PSG suggested a swap deal including Renato Sanches for Rabiot, revealed the source, but the Germans were not keen, and communication ceased while the French giants completed the signing of Paredes, and Rabiot's private life has since become even more complicated.
Sources close to Rabiot have explained to ESPN FC that the player is no longer considering the numerous summer options in front of him as "football [understandably] has taken a back seat" recently after the deaths of his maternal grandmother and then his terminally ill father.
Despite the abundance of interest in Rabiot in January and ahead of this summer, a departure this month now looks like it will not happen as the player and his family have other things on their minds instead of a potentially career-defining decision.
A source close to Tuchel confirmed that the German remains keen to utilise Rabiot again, if allowed, but that the last time it was discussed -- in Qatar -- the idea was immediately shot down by both chairman and CEO Nasser Al-Khelaifi, as well as sporting director Antero Henrique.
Tuchel and Henrique's relationship is as strained as ever, although the former Porto man has at last provided his coach with a central midfielder in Paredes. But the importance of another arrival before the end of this week has been stressed.
All sources agreed that there has been no indication whether a thaw in relations between Rabiot and the PSG leadership could occur before the end of the season, particularly with his dream Barca move now looking less likely than it did before.
At this point in time, it is not certain that Rabiot has made his final PSG appearance and he will feature again if Tuchel gets his way.