Neymar
SHENZHEN, CHINA - AUGUST 02: Neymar Jr of Paris Saint-Germain looks on during a training session ahead of the French Trophy of Champions football match between Rennes and Paris Saint-Germain at Shenzhen Universiadg Sports Center stadium on August 2, 2019 in Shenzhen, China. (Photo by Zhe Ji/Getty Images)

Real Madrid and Neymar have had an affair since the Brazilian ace broke the internet with his skills in 2011. After one failed attempt at signing him and with his former club Barcelona still in the frame to capture him once again, Real Madrid should stay away from Neymar.

Real Madrid Should Not Sign Neymar

Past flirting and saving face

It’s public knowledge that the capital side wanted to sign the Brazilian from Santos in the summer of 2013. After a long-lasting saga, he joined their arch-rivals Barcelona in what turned out to be one of the most controversial deals in football history.

Neymar comes with baggage. His transfer to Barcelona and then to Paris Saint-Germain shows just how money-centric his football priorities are. Perhaps this isn’t his fault. His father, who also acts his agent, is the driving force behind his moves. Neymar Sr. bagged a reported €40 million along with a signing-on fee in excess of €20 million when his son moved to Europe from his homeland.

This deal landed the Catalan club in deep trouble as they faced legal action from Santos and tax authorities in Spain. Their then-President, Sandro Rosell, had to resign as well. All of this is over and above facing a ban to sign players for two transfer windows. President Florentino Perez might see the transfer of Neymar as his ultimate dream move, but Real Madrid can ill afford such a controversy right now.

On-Field Impact

Neymar is a fantastic footballer – perhaps the most talented footballer of his generation. Madrid fans might not agree with it, but he was terrifying to play against. His technical capabilities coupled with his pace and directness leave defenders for dead more often than not. He is the most fouled player in Europe along with Eden Hazard and Lionel Messi. However, this Madrid side already has an enigmatic talisman on the left flank in Hazard. They also possess Vinicius Junior, Marco Asensio and Brahim Diaz, who all would play on the left if it was up to them.

Neymar would command that position for himself and perhaps justifiably so. His price tag would do that for him. He’s not someone who switches flanks often or occupy other positions in attack. Stockpiling players in the same position hasn’t helped Real in the past – just ask Isco and James Rodriguez. The Brazilian would undoubtedly improve Madrid’s attack and creative impotence but his defensive work rate is questionable.

His injury record is not glittering either. He missed crucial parts of the seasons in his two years at PSG. In both seasons, the club could have done with his services as they exited in the initial knockout stages of the Champions League. He also missed the Copa America this summer through injury. Moreover, if he were to join, Real would have two players (he and Hazard) who would have to be given free roles to fully exploit their potential. This means lesser defensive stability in transition, something the side is struggling with even without the former Barcelona man.

The Context

Some would say that this is the perfect time for Real Madrid to buy Neymar. He’s unwanted at Paris, the club doesn’t want to sell to Barcelona and Real can have him on an initial loan to defer large payments. But, looking deeper, a second failed move could prove disastrous for Florentino Perez and the club.

Neymar is, for the lack of a better word, hated, in Paris at the moment. Abusive banners towards the Brazil international were seen in the inaugural Ligue 1 match of the season. The state-owned club is eager to sell, but not to the Catalan club. The Qatari ownership is fed up of dealing with Barcelona and Neymar Sr. They see Real Madrid as a way out of dealing with them.

The catch is Neymar himself. Lionel Messi, Neymar’s good friend, is driving the club’s pursuit of the player. It was reported that Neymar also agreed to terms with Madrid earlier and then approached the Argentine to push for his move to Barcelona. This shows nothing but his desire to go back to Barcelona. So, at best, Real Madrid buy an injury-prone, criminally charged, spoilt player who doesn’t want to be at the club with his father being another stumbling block.

Due to all of these reasons, Real Madrid should stay away from Neymar.

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