- Neymar has listed six players he expects to take the FIFA World Cup by storm.
- Liverpool FC attacker Mohamed Salah made Neymar’s list, but the Brazil national team striker failed to even mention Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
- Neymar played with Messi for four seasons at FC Barcelona but thinks another of his former teammates, Luis Suarez, will do well at the tournament in Russia.
Brazil national team striker Neymar expects six players to take the 2018 FIFA World Cup by storm – and his list doesn’t include Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo, two of the top goalscorers on the planet.
Neymar broke a bone in his foot during Paris Saint-Germain’s 3-0 victory over Marseille in February. He had surgery in March,is now walking without crutches, and is expected to be fit in time for Brazil’s first match at the World Cup in Russia – a Group E game against Switzerland in Rostov-on-Don on June 17.
Neymar already has one eye on the tournament and listed a number of players he expects to “make a difference” in an interview with Live Soccer, as reported by Eurosport.
The 26-year-old introduced two of his Brazil teammates first. “I believe that [Philippe] Coutinho and Gabriel Jesus can make a difference – I hope they do,” Neymar said.
Mohamed Salah won the Premier League Player of the Year award at an event on Sunday, and Neymar expects the Egyptian to take his Liverpool form with him to Russia. “Salah is a player that doesn’t belong to a title contender, but I believe he’ll do a good job,” he said.
Finally, Neymar mentioned two Belgian players and a Uruguyan striker. “There are others like Eden Hazard, Kevin de Bruyne, and Luis Suarez who could get their teams to the next level,” he said.
Neymar failed to mention two obvious picks
Neymar’s list is by no means complete as the Brazilian failed to mention two obvious picks – Portugal national team striker Cristiano Ronaldo and creative Argentinean forward Lionel Messi.
The omission of Messi is all the more extraordinary as the FC Barcelona attacker is Neymar’s former teammate – an athlete he played alongside for four seasons before completing a groundbreaking move to PSG last summer.
Though Ronaldo and Messi are both advancing in years, they remain two of the most lethal goalscorers on the planet.
Ronaldo has scored 24 goals in 25 La Liga appearances but is four behind Messi, who has struck 29 times from 32 games in La Liga. Both players are in the 10 top-scoring players in Europe list – a ranking that does not include Neymar.
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