Neymar has issued a withering depiction of his time at Paris Saint‑Germain, saying he was subject to unfair abuse from the club’s fans.
In an interview with Globo that aired on Sunday he spoke about the mixed feelings he had when his former PSG and Barcelona teammate Lionel Messi won the World Cup with Argentina last year.
“I was very happy for the year [Messi] had, but at the same time very sad, because he lived both sides of the coin,” said Neymar, who joined Al‑Hilal this summer, ending his six-year stay in France. “He went to heaven with the Argentina team, won everything in recent years, and with Paris he lived hell, we lived through hell, both he and I.”
Neymar and Messi came under fire from sections of the PSG fanbase after failing to win the Champions League with the club. Both players were booed towards the end of their time in Paris. “We get upset, because we’re not there for nothing, we’re there to do our best, [to] be champions, try to make history,” the Brazilian said.
“That’s why we started playing together again, we came together there so we could make history. Unfortunately, we didn’t make it.”
Messi left PSG this summer, joining Inter Miami in Major League Soccer, where he has transformed the club’s fortunes. Neymar said the criticism of the Argentinian by PSG fans was unfair. “He’s a guy who trains, who fights, if he loses he gets angry and he was unfairly targeted, in my opinion.”
Abuse from fans is not just a problem in France, though. Neymar also spoke about the racist abuse his friend Vinícius Júnior has suffered in Spain.
“It’s sad, it’s sad, today’s world has changed a lot, all this prejudice with colour … it’s very sad to see a friend go through this,” Neymar said. “Not just a friend, but all the people who have gone through this and go through this on a daily basis.”