Mark Maher explains why he believes La Liga and Neymar is a match made in heaven.
Watching Neymar in action for Santos it is an understatement to say his breathtaking displays make any football fan excited. However, you can’t help but see a resemblance with how Robinho used to light up the Brazilian league.
Same club, same physique – Robinho’s infamous ‘lollipops’ were YouTube sensations at the time and the whole of Europe were in awe of the youngster, before he enjoyed a semi-successful stint at Real Madrid. However, we all know how his experience in England turned out.
There are a couple of reasons as to why Neymar should avoid a move to England.
The pace and tempo of the league is so quick that he won’t have enough time on the ball to try all of his tricks. Also, for such a physical league his style wouldn’t be suited and he would find it much more difficult to adapt – again just like his compatriot Robinho.
Speaking of adapting, you can’t help but feel that Neymar would be more familiar to the surroundings of a sunny afternoon playing away to Sevilla in the Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan, rather than an away day to the Brittania on a wet and windy Monday night.
Also, if Neymar does go to a club like Chelsea, it won’t take long for fans to turn on him if the club find themselves losing a match and his incredible confidence leads to him trying tricks that may not pay off.
You see, for all the YouTube clips that stream the internet of “>Neymar’s skills, if you watch a full game for either Santos or Brazil you will witness that even though he has some amazing skills in his locker, a lot of the time it doesn’t pay off and he loses possession. Most of the Premier League big clubs will not take a gamble on a player like this, as it’s a more tactical league with less freedom of expression.
Looking at La Liga – and Barcelona in particular, the style of football and formation they play is similar to what Neymar is used to. If Messi is picked as the main striker, Neymar would still easily be able to slot into one of the wing forward positions that Barcelona usually play or vice versa.
With Real Madrid, he could slot in alongside either Karim Benzema or Gonzalo Higuain up front or even play out wide. Speaking the same language as Cristiano Ronaldo, they could form a devastating understanding that would terrify opponents every time they attacked.
With so much creativity in both teams – Xavi, Iniesta, Fabregas for Barca, and Xabi Alonso, Ozil and Di Maria for Real, Neymar would thrive from all this service and can only benefit from playing with them.
Although both equal in quality, the tempo in La Liga is slower compared to the Premier League and will give Neymar more time and space on the ball to work his magic. Also, if things don’t go his way in certain matches he could have a Messi or Ronaldo in his side to bail him out with their goal per game ratio.
At the moment, Santos are trying everything in their power to keep the superstar until after next year’s World Cup in Brazil. However, it’s inevitable that he will eventually leave the club, and when that time comes he has to choose La Liga over the Premier League.
Here’s a clip of the Brazilian in all his glory:
Sport Is Everything. Mark Maher.