Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior, known simply as Neymar, was born on February 5, 1992 in Mogi das Cruzes, Brazil. He came from a simple family background – his father Neymar Santos Sr. was a former professional footballer turned coach, while his mother Nadine da Silva was a housewife.
From a young age, Neymar showed an exceptional talent for football. He inherited the love for the game from his father, who took special interest in helping Neymar hone his skills from the age of 3. Neymar spent hours upon hours practicing different techniques like dribbling and shooting. By age 9, he had joined the youth academy of Portuguesa Santista FC.
Major Teams Played For
|Won Copa Libertadores
Won Copa do Brasil 3 times
Won Recopa Sudamericana
|Won La Liga title twice
Won Champions League
Formed prolific MSN trio
|Won Ligue 1 title 4 times
Runner-up in Champions League final
|Brazil National Team
|Olympic Gold (2016)
Key player for 2014 and 2018 World Cup teams
Professional Career Beginnings at Santos
Neymar signed his first professional contract with Santos FC on his 17th birthday in 2009. This was the beginning of a meteoric rise to stardom.
He instantly became an integral part of the Santos starting eleven, helping the club win two successive Campeonato Paulista championships in 2010 and 2011. His electrifying performances attracted interest from European clubs, but Santos managed to ward them off temporarily.
In 2011, Neymar’s fame went global after a series of scintillating displays in the Copa Libertadores. He scored crucial goals that propelled Santos to their first Continental title since 1963. Neymar finished as the joint top goalscorer and also won the ‘Best Young Player’ award.
€86.2 Million Transfer to Barcelona
After winning three domestic crowns and the Copa Libertadores with Santos, Neymar moved to Spanish giants FC Barcelona in 2013. The transfer fee of €86.2 million made him one of the most expensive players ever at the time.
Neymar joined a frightening attacking trio alongside Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez – dubbed ‘MSN’. He helped Barca win a historic La Liga, Copa del Rey and Champions League treble in 2014-15. In the Champions League final against Juventus, Neymar scored the 3rd goal to kill off the game.
Unfortunately, Neymar’s Barca career was marred by off-field controversy and an on-field rivalry with Messi. He left Camp Nou in 2017 after winning 2 La Liga titles, 3 Copa del Reys and 1 Champions League medal.
Current Stint with Paris Saint-Germain (PSG)
In another blockbuster transfer, Neymar moved from Barcelona to French club Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) in 2017 for €222 million – making him the world’s most expensive player. The mammoth fee underscored his massive popularity and marketing appeal.
At PSG, Neymar has battled with injuries but been instrumental when fit. He helped PSG dominate domestically, winning four straight Ligue 1 titles. His goal in the 2020 Champions League final could not prevent a narrow 1-0 loss to Bayern Munich.
Neymar extended his PSG contract until 2025 in 2021. He continues to be the fulcrum of PSG’s quest for European glory. Alongside the likes of Mbappé and Messi, he makes them one of soccer’s most feared attacking units.
International Career with Brazil
At just 18 years old, Neymar earned his first senior cap for Brazil in 2010. He starred for Brazil’s gold medal winning team at his home Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.
In 2014, although Brazil suffered a humiliating 1-7 loss against Germany in the World Cup semi-finals, Neymar still managed 4 goals in 5 games.
Four years later in Russia, Neymar was the standout performer, scoring 2 goals before another injury prematurely ended his World Cup. Brazil missed his spark in the quarter finals as they lost to Belgium.
Going into the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, Neymar at age 30 is probably entering his last World Cup at his peak. With 75 goals in 121 games, he is already Brazil’s second highest goalscorer ever behind only Pelé.
Playing Style and Goal Scoring Prowess
Neymar’s biggest assets are his close control, speed, and technical ability. He epitomizes the classic Brazilian attacker – full of tricks, flicks, stepovers and dragbacks. His style is flashy, entertaining and geared towards beating opponents off the dribble.
Additionally, Neymar is a superb finisher with either foot and also a master of free kicks. He has scored over 420 goals for his clubs and country so far. In the 2021/22 season, Neymar scored 13 Champions League goals in 11 games.
Much has been made of Neymar going down easily or exaggerating fouls. While his histrionics divide opinion, very few can doubt Neymar’s exceptional talent. At his best, he is virtually unstoppable and among the top 3 players in the world.<h2>Who does Neymar play for in 2023? </h2>
Neymar currently plays as a forward for Paris Saint-Germain (often called ‘PSG’) in the top French football league known as Ligue 1. He signed for PSG in 2017 from FC Barcelona and helped the club win four consecutive Ligue 1 championships. His current contract at PSG expires in 2025.
At the international level, Neymar plays for the Brazil national team and is currently their second-highest goalscorer ever. He is expected to lead Brazil’s bid to win a record-extending sixth World Cup title at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.<h2>What is the full name of Neymar? </h2>
The full name of the Brazilian football superstar commonly referred to as simply ‘Neymar’ is Neymar da Silva Santos Junior. His full name includes:
- First name: Neymar
- Middle name: da Silva Santos
- Last name/Surname: Junior
So his full name expanded is Neymar da Silva Santos Junior, but he is almost always just called ‘Neymar’ or sometimes ‘Neymar Jr’. The usage of Junior denotes that his father is also named Neymar Santos.<h2>How much is Neymar’s net worth? </h2>
According to Forbes’ 2022 list of highest paid athletes, Neymar has a net worth of approximately $200 million as of 2022. This makes him the 7th wealthiest footballer in the world.
The vast majority of Neymar’s net worth has been amassed through his playing contracts and endorsements. Some key details:
- His current PSG salary is reportedly €36 million per year after tax
- Between 2017-2022 he was the 3rd highest paid soccer player behind Messi and Ronaldo
- Endorsement partners include: Puma, Red Bull, Beats by Dre, Unilever
Additionally, Neymar has made savvy investments in real estate and businesses – including a sportswear brand called NJR. With his combination of salary, endorsements and investments, his net worth is poised to grow further.<h2>How many Champions League titles has Neymar won? </h2>
In his club career thus far spanning 12 years, Neymar has won the UEFA Champions League title 1 time:
- 2014–15 Champions League: Won with Barcelona, played a key role scoring in final vs Juventus
Neymar did come close to a second Champions League title in 2019-20, but his PSG side lost 0-1 to Bayern Munich in the final.
He has come under criticism for not being able to inspire PSG to European success despite their massive spending and collection of superstars. But at just 30 years old, Neymar could potentially still lead them to the coveted Champions League glory in the next few seasons.
Neymar is undoubtedly among the greatest talents of his generation blessed with mesmerizing skill. He has already won almost everything possible at the club level including a treble and scoring over 420 goals.
National glory is likely the next pinnacle left. He will spearhead an extremely talented Brazil team at the 2022 World Cup trying to end their 20-year drought since last winning football’s ultimate prize.