Neymar's Path To Greatness Through Al Hilal Will Not Be An Easy One

Neymar's Path To Greatness Through Al Hilal Will Not Be An Easy One

Neymar is a freak of a player who has shades of greatness and legend written on him but those virtues are yet to be completely fulfilled.

Haridev PushparajUpdated: Saturday, August 19, 2023, 03:32 PM IST
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If there is a player in world football for the last decade who oozes class, skill and dexterity with his exploits on the field, it has to be Brazil's Neymar.

Also, if there is a footballing genius who has been a massive underachiever for the last 6-7 years, the name invariably comes down to Neymar.

The man is an enigma wrapped in a conundrum with possibilities waiting to be unravelled and demystified and that has been the story of Brazil's most well known footballer.

With all the genius that he possesses, how Neymar has not been able to win a World Cup for Brazil yet is a mystery.

Sure, he takes a great deal of team effort to win World Cups but supreme individual brilliance is what sets certain players apart and Neymar falls in that category of players. He is a freak of a player who has shades of greatness and legend written on him but those virtues are yet to be completely fulfilled.

Neymar's move to Al Hilal

After making his much publicised move to Al Hilal few days back, there is a lot of speculation with regard to where Neymar is heading in terms of his career and legacy.

Here is a man who was once touted as the heir to Lionel Messi's footballing greatness and those comparisons had an eerie resemblance when both linked up at Barcelona in 2013.

And then Messi followed him at Paris Saint Germain as the two South American superstars revelled fans with their artistry and exhibition of 'The Beautiful Game'.

But apart from following each other to clubs and coming from the same continent, Neymar and Messi don't share much in common, especially greatness.

Messi was considered the greatest footballer to play the game but never win a World Cup for his country, until he ticked that box at Qatar 2022.

It took Messi years, more than a decade actually, to come out of the shadow of the colossal Diego Maradona whose magic won Argentina the 1986 World Cup single-handedly.

Neymar still a work in progress

Neymar is still a work in progress until he emulates what Messi did for Argentina with his own exploits for Brazil at the FIFA World Cup.

He will be 34 when the 2026 World Cup comes around and it will be all the more challenging to pull off a dream World Cup victory for Brazil.

But Neymar being Neymar, one can never rule the fairytale out just like in the case of Messi, who brought his best football to the fore when Qatar 2022 came around.

With all the experience of having played in Brazil for Santos, in Europe for Barcelona and PSG and now finally making a move to Al Hilal, how much the Saudi Arabian stint will help Neymar's preparations for his ultimate goal will be questionable.

The financial muscle of the Saudi Pro League is definitely an alluring aspect for all the legendary footballers from top European clubs going there.

Brazilian flavour in Saudi Pro League

However, Neymar with all the supreme skill sets honed in the footballing cathedrals of Brazil, Spain and France will want to also keep an eye on further polishing them enroute another World Cup winning attempt.

A player who has 257 goals in 412 appearances at the club level for Santos, Barcelona and PSG put together and 77 goals in 124 appearances for the Brazilian senior national team is truly a special player.

And this special talent who is yet to fulfill his unbridled talent at the highest level will certainly have to look at that aspect as well in his move to the Kingdom.

Neymar would know deep down that with all the money in the world, he would still feel a void minus a World Cup trophy in his cabinet.

Cristiano Ronaldo knows that feeling and Neymar could exchange notes with him since both live in Saudi Arabia now. Not the nicest feeling in the world, that.

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