Neymar: Ex PSG Star Explains Why Brazilian Couldn't Compete With Messi and Ronaldo

Neymar: Ex PSG Star Explains Why Brazilian Couldn't Compete With Messi and Ronaldo

Elijah Odetokun
March 24, 2024 at 9:07 AM
In this article:
Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior logo
Al-Hilal Saudi FC logoFBrazil logo
Lionel Messi logo
Inter Miami CF logoFArgentina logo
Cristiano Ronaldo logo
C. Ronaldo
Al Nassr FC logoFPortugal logo
Javier Pastore logo
J. Pastore
Qatar SC logoMArgentina logo
Paris Saint Germain (PSG) logo
FC Barcelona logo
FC Barcelona
  • Neymar Jr is one of the most talented footballers of all time
  • Fans believe his achievements do not match his potential
  • A former teammate has explained why he underachieved

Neymar is one of the most talented and successful footballers, but many fans still believe he did not actualise his potential, and a former teammate has explained why.

He began his career at Santos and was signed by Barcelona in 2013, where he formed a deadly MSN trio with fellow South Americans Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.

Neymar Jr, Javier Pastore, PSG, Parc des Princes, Ligue 1.
Neymar and Javier Pastore were teammates at PSG for one season. Photo by Jean Catuffe.
Source: Getty Images

The trio won every trophy possible before Neymar felt his time at the club was over, and he wanted to leave after just four years. Paris Saint-Germain activated his release clause of €222 million, and he moved, a world record fee per BBC Sports.

Pastore reflects on Neymar’s career

The move to PSG was touted to make him the starman of a team, not be under Messi's shadow, and boost his chances of winning the Ballon d'Or.

His former teammate at the French club and the man who relinquished the number 10 jersey for him, Javier Pastore, has opened up on why the Brazilian did not achieve his goals.

The Argentine attacker claimed Messi is the only player he has ever seen who is more talented than the 31-year-old. He highlighted the qualities of an attacker and ticked all the boxes but never achieved what his potential matched.

“If he had wanted, he would fight for the Ballon d’Or against Messi, Cristiano, and whoever, but he lives his life in a different way,” Pastore said via Sportskeeda.
“He does not live for football 100%. I love him very much. I have written to him quite a bit now, during his injury. At first, I expected someone arrogant, and I was wrong.”

Since leaving Barcelona, the former Santos star’s highest place in the Ballon d'Or rankings was 12th. He was omitted from the 30-man shortlist in 2019 and 2020.

He left Paris for Saudi Arabia last summer but is currently out injured with an ACL injury he suffered on international duty last year.

Fans slam Neymar for being overweight

Sports Brief previously reported on fans slamming Neymar for being overweight when he turned up at Brazilian legend Romario’s birthday party.

He is still rehabilitating from his cruciate ligament injury, which limited some of his fitness activities and made him fuller, which made fans claim he's tired of football.

Elijah Odetokun photo
Elijah Odetokun
Elijah Odetokun is Reuters-trained journalist with three years of experience having previously worked at Daily Times Nigeria, OmaSports and El Futbolero.