Five years on from record fee: how superstar Neymar is fighting for his form and the love of PSG fans

In the summer of 2017, the Eiffel Tower sparkled in honor Neymar red and blue, his club colors Paris Saint Germain. Neymar has become the new king of football in the French capital. Never before has this structure been used for such a purpose.


Five years later, such tributes to the Brazilian superstar, who left FC Barcelona for a transfer fee of 222 million euros on August 3, 2017 and became a PSG professional, are no longer spoken of. Club bosses from Qatar are apparently keen to get rid of the 30-year-old. The stunning turnaround comes after PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi signed a six-year contract extension almost 15 months ago, which would have expired on June 30 this year. Neymar has a contract in Paris until 2027. Gage per season: 36 million euros – net.

Tchouaméni’s record transfer in the summer so far

This is also PSG’s dilemma: selling the star seems impossible. Because no other club can raise such sums at the moment, except perhaps Newcastle United, who got rich with the help of Saudi financiers. Neymar just doesn’t want to go there. By comparison, the record transfer during this period of change is Frenchman Aurélien Tchouaméni (22), for €80 million from AS Monaco’s midfield to headquarters. transferred from Real Madrid. is.

Neymar’s PSG record is good, with 162 goals (102 goals/60 assists) in 145 games, but a love affair with the club and fans has never quite materialised. Overall, Neymar has failed in almost half of all matches. And so it seems forever, as he realized his potential in a PSG shirt. in 2020 in the final of the Champions League in Lisbon, he was at his best and led Paris to the goal. Final against FC Bayern (0:1).

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Neymar has been whistled at every PSG home game

Since then he has been a shadow of his former self and is booed at every home game at Prinzenpark – Paris, the city of love? “They can do it as long as they want, I have a long-term contract and I’m sure the tide will turn in my favor again,” he said recently. He took a step towards making amends in the Super Cup against FC Nantes (4-0). He showed what he is capable of with two goals.

After five years, Neymar has to deliver. The World Cup in three and a half months seems like an incentive for him. He has shown himself to be more disciplined since the start of training. So he showed up four days earlier than expected to start training. On a PR tour in Japan, he was the only PSG player scheduled to go on a TV show in the morning. He got up two hours before the show so he could have time for breakfast.

Former pro Roten questions Neymar’s consistency

Is this the new Neymar who wants to prove that he can be relied on and that moving is not an option for him? He seems to want to show everyone that he can lead PSG to the European throne alongside Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappé.

Not everyone believes that. “I’m excited to see Neymar perform in the coming months,” he says Jeronimas Roten, former PSG professional and today presenter of RMC Sport. “But he shouldn’t think he’s at his best again just because he scored twice in the Super Cup. He has to perform at the top level and watch himself stay fit for the whole season. I have some doubts because he’s never played. He also has a lot of pressure because the fans don’t want him anymore.” Difficult prospects for the footballer who cost the highest transfer fee in history five years ago.

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