A look back at Dani Alves, Neymar, and Bernardo Silva praising Mbappé before his ascent to stardom.
Paris Saint-Germain F.C. | Brazil
Neymar da Silva Santos Jr. is one of the best football players in the world. The forward made his debut for Brazil in 2010, when he was just 18. Since he scored in his first match — a 2–0 defeat of the U.S. in a friendly at Giants Stadium — no national team player has scored more international goals, and only the immortal Pelé scored more in his career. Neymar scored three goals as Brazil won the silver medal at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, and then captained the national team to a gold medal four years later in Rio de Janeiro, scoring four goals in the tournament. A fractured vertebrae cut his World Cup short in 2014. In 2018, Brazil was narrowly defeated by Belgium in the quarterfinals. Neymar has been playing professionally since 2009, when he made his debut for Santos. In five seasons, he helped the Alvinegro win a Copa do Brasil and the 2011 Copa Libertadores — Santos’s first Libertadores title in 48 years. In 2011 and 2012, he was named the South American Footballer of the Year. In the spring of 2013, he moved to Spain’s La Liga, signing a five-year deal with Barcelona, where he formed an attacking trio with Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez. In Neymar’s second season in Spain, Barça won the treble, topping La Liga, and winning the Copa del Rey and the Champions League. He scored the final goal in the 3–1 Champions League final defeat of Juventus. In three years at Barcelona, Neymar scored 68 La Liga goals and 21 in Champions League competition. In August 2017, he left Spain for France, signing a deal with Paris Saint-Germain. In his first season, he was voted the Ligue 1 Player of the Year, and the next season he led PSG to the first of three consecutive league titles. In 2020, he led the club to its first Champions League final. Neymar was raised about 25 miles east of São Paolo, and as he rose through the football ranks he stayed especially close with his father. He also became enamored with futsal, and credits the indoor game with helping him hone his skills, especially the abilities to think quickly and maneuver in tight spaces. By the time he was 11, Neymar was playing for Santos. Six years later, he signed his first professional contract with the club. In 2012 and 2013, SportsPro named him the most marketable athlete in the world, and in 2016, ESPN cited him as the world's fourth-most famous athlete. The next year, Time included him in its list of the 100 most influential people in the world. In 2019, Forbes listed Neymar as the world's third highest-paid athlete.
You need those kinds of people in the locker room. It’s a long season, so you gotta have … gotta have some jokes and some good vibes.
You’re chasing greatness, you want to be great, but the one thing I couldn’t control was my health, in terms of my ankles.
I just wanted to be great, because I saw greatness ahead of me.
Dois dos principais atletas do planeta, num bate-papo na mais antiga quadra de basquete do mundo.
Dos de los mejores atletas del mundo, pasando el rato en la cancha de básquetbol más antigua del mundo.
Two of the greatest athletes in the world, hanging out at the oldest basketball court in the world.
My son was at school with his friends and a TV ad was going on. If I’m not mistaken, it was an ad for Brazil’s match. And then I was on TV.
Neymar and Gerard Piqué discuss their thoughts on World Cup winner Kylian Mbappé.