#Neymar and #PSG left to pick up pieces as transfer saga ends
PARIS: Neymar’s decision to join Paris Saint-Germain in 2017 was motivated by the desire to establish himself as the best player in the world, but a problematic moment in the French capital has left the Brazilian at risk of losing the best years of his career. .
The closing of the transfer window has finally put an end to the long saga that surrounds the future of the most expensive player in the world, who will remain in the PSG having not been able to return to Barcelona that he longed for.
His former club could not complete an agreement to rescue the 27-year-old from his apparent nightmare in Paris, with Neymar so determined to return that the sports newspaper L’Equipe reported that he offered to pay 20 million euros ($ 22 million) of the his. pocket towards the rate.
PSG paid 222 million euros ($ 264 million at that time) for its services, while committing informed salaries of 36 million euros a year.
However, he has not done enough at the Parc des Princes in two seasons damaged by injuries and interrupted by distractions outside the field.
In August 2017, the desperation of the Qatari owners of the PSG to win the Champions League seemed to coincide with Neymar’s obsession to get out of the shadow of Lionel Messi and win the Golden Ball.
“I would love to meet in two years and see what its value will be compared to today. At least double, “said PSG President Nasser Al-Khelaifi at the time.
– Missing at key moments –
However, since moving to Parc des Princes, Neymar has appeared in just half of his club’s games.
When he has played, he has often been brilliant, scoring 51 goals in 58 games. He has won consecutive league titles and a Ligue 1 player award of the year.
But the Champions League is what really matters, and when it has really mattered in Europe, it has been absent. Injuries to the foot saw him miss three of the four qualifying matches of the Champions League that the club has played since his arrival.
Without him, they lost in the last 16 against Real Madrid in 2018 and then against Manchester United this year.
After suffering a broken foot for the first time in February 2018, Neymar missed the rest of the PSG season to be ready for the World Cup. Brazil came out in the quarterfinals.
In January of this year, Neymar fractured the same foot, missing the crucial part of the PSG season for three more months.
Since then he lost the Copa América because of an ankle injury and was accused of raping a Brazilian woman at a hotel in Paris in May; The case was dismissed in August by a Brazilian judge.
Neymar never learned French and often seemed too busy with distractions outside the field, such as organizing fancy birthday parties and making a cameo in his favorite Netflix series.
– Good for the PSG brand? –
She remains one of the biggest sports celebrities on the planet, but she must quickly leave behind the last months and meet, otherwise there may not be anyone rich enough to be willing to risk buying it next year.
PSG supporters have made clear their unhappiness towards Neymar, but those feelings can still change if he brings success in the field.
In the boardroom, he also realizes its commercial value: when Neymar arrived, Al-Khelaifi spoke of “a two-brand project: we are associating the Neymar brand and the PSG brand.”
Since then, they have signed important sponsorship and support agreements with people like Nike, and Neymar’s presence with Kylian Mbappe plays an important role.
“The PSG is a young club that needs a great media profile to help them develop. That is what Neymar has brought, like Zlatan (Ibrahimovic) or (David) Beckham before him, “French sports marketing specialist Jerome Neveu told AFP.
Ending the Neymar experiment could have allowed the PSG to begin again, although Mbappe and coach Thomas Tuchel had expressed their desire to stay.
“I like Neymar, I want to keep playing with him, with Kylian and with everyone,” Tuchel said recently.
Now all eyes will be on Neymar to see if he can put this episode in bed, although his suspension from the three-game Champions League means that it may still be some time before it has a genuine impact.