from redemption to fall

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Neymar went through all the emotions in 2022. The Brazilian international, eager to finally win the Champions League with Paris Saint-Germain, started the year with a malleolus injury. Barely recovered for the double confrontation against Real Madrid, the playmaker will not have weighed in the game of his people. Relying on the talent of Kylian Mbappé, Neymar watched helplessly as the Merengue came back in the second leg, plunging the capital club into an anonymous end to the season. Worse, like Leo Messi, the former Barça was targeted by the public at the Parc des Princes after this new European disappointment. If a few blows brightened up the last part of the championship, starting with a hat-trick against Clermont or the opener during the Classic against Marseille, none managed to make people forget the failure in C1.

A summer rebirth

Pushed out during the transfer window following Kylian Mbappé’s extension, Neymar had an eventful summer. Nevertheless, as soon as the season resumed, the Brazilian international reminded everyone of his immense talent. Custodian of the game under Christophe Galtier, newly appointed head of the team, Neymar started on a high. Unsustainable in Ligue 1, as evidenced by his 11 goals and 9 assists in 14 league games, the Brazilian seemed in his best condition since signing in 2017. His trio with Leo Messi and Kylian Mbappé finally kept all its promises after a tricky first season. With the World Cup in sight, Neymar returned to the fore, determined to silence the critics.

Arriving at the Qatari World Cup in the form of his life, Neymar definitely wanted to establish his legendary status by bringing his 6th star to Brazil. While the Seleçao acted as the favorite, all the lights seemed to be green for the artist. Only, once again, an injury came to ruin everything. Hit in the ankle during the opening match, Neymar returned for the round of 16, taking part in the Brazilian festival against South Korea. In the next round, the Parisian first put on his savior costume, opening the scoring in extra time. Nevertheless, the Seleçao fell from above against Croatia, joined in the last moments and eliminated on penalties. As a symbol, Neymar – undoubtedly the best in this exercise – did not even have the opportunity to start following the failure of Marquinhos. Inconsolable and in tears for long minutes on the pitch, the playmaker crystallized the failure of a nation.

What year 2023 for Neymar?

Neymar will have to recover from the elimination of Brazil Credit Photo – Icon Sport

Many questions, few certainties for Neymar. After this terrible disappointment, the Brazilian thought of putting an end to his international career. If he has since returned to the field with Paris Saint-Germain, it is difficult to know what state the player will be in for the rest of the season, while his two attacking friends have experienced an exceptional World Cup. If he manages to continue the momentum of his start to the year, Neymar will certainly be a first-choice asset for the explosive round of 16 to come against Bayern Munich. One thing is certain, only a victory in the Champions League could erase the disappointment of the last World Cup. There is no doubt that the Parisian supporters would be satisfied with it.

to summarize

Neymar had a mixed year 2022 to say the least. After a nightmare end to the season with Paris Saint-Germain, the Brazilian international returned to the top at the start of the year, before experiencing a new disappointment with the Seleçao.

Arnaud Dechelotte

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