Monday, October 2, 2023

Neymar is recognized as Brazil’s top scorer, but not everyone agrees


Brazilian star Neymar received a commemorative plaque after becoming the team’s all-time leading scorer in official matches last Friday.

However, some still consider three-time world champion Pelé as the top scorer considering the language they used to describe his performance in the South American country.

“For Neymar Jr., the team’s all-time leading scorer in matches against national teams,” read the plaque presented to him by Brazilian Football Confederation president Ednaldo Rodrigues, a great Pelé fan. . “With your goals you have brought joy to millions of Brazilians and fans around the world.”

Neymar scored in the 61st minute of Brazil’s 5-1 win over Bolivia to start qualification for the South American World Cup. With this goal he surpassed Pelé, who died on December 29 at the age of 82 after a long battle with cancer. Neymar celebrated by punching the air, just like Pelé did.

The 31-year-old striker scored his second goal in extra time, taking him to 79 goals in 125 appearances.

“I’m very happy, I have no words,” Neymar acknowledged after Rodrigues gave him the plaque. “I never thought I would reach this record.”

Despite the celebrations of the player and his teammates, the Brazilian confederation was not very effective, as the message on the plaque implies.

Unlike FIFA, the confederation considers Pelé to have scored 95 goals in 114 matches, including his friendlies against clubs or teams from the Brazilian states.

Santos, the club where Pelé played and where Neymar started his career, also did not accept that the Al-Hilal player broke the record of what many called The King.

“The reign of football,” the club published on social networks with a photo of Neymar and Pelé.

The Brazilian press has also rejected the idea that Neymar has surpassed Pelé.

“FIFA despises history by not counting all of Pelé’s goals,” said journalist Mauro Cézar Pereira. Columnist Renato Mauricio Prado described the table change as “an aberration.”

While Pelé is a national team player, countries often face clubs, and Brazil also makes many tours in Europe, facing other clubs.

This model also ignores the eight goals from Neymar in the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games. These tournaments are not considered for the senior team.

According to official figures, Pelé has a better average – ahead of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, who remain the top scorers in Argentina and Portugal, respectively.

Pelé scored 77 goals in 91 official matches, averaging 0.84 goals per game. Neymar averaged 0.62.

Neymar, who has yet to win the Copa América and the World Cup, humbly accepted the award.

“I want to say this, (the record) doesn’t mean I’m better than him (Pelé) or any player in the national team,” he said in a statement. “I always wanted to write my history with the national team and now I did it.”

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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