Of the names actually mentioned in the article I’d agree with the Pogba decision the most but even then I’m iffy. My only thing is that he is yet to fully convince me in any big game I’ve seen him in. Hopefully that changes soon. As Gab Marcotti said he has all the tools you want in a player and he plays in the engine room. At 23, he’s younger than Kroos and Griezmann and will likely always be ahead of Weigl and Alli in terms of quality and experience.
That being said, Neymar was the first name that came to my mind. He’s just one year older than Pogba and has already won so much. He’s probably not captain material but he can be a leader and provide that winning mentality from the front. He still has maturing to do, they both do, but he’s already proven himself in terms of big games. True, he’s had Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Andres Iniesta to help him out but Pogba hasn’t had any slouches around him.
Of course, Brazil, or Dunga rather, wants Neymar to play both competitions. Given how underwhelming Brazil has been in Dunga’s time in charge I don’t see a burnt-out Neymar making that much of a difference in the Olympics after playing in the Copa. Seems like Barcelona will definitely have to get that new forward next season given the workload Neymar might end up having. Then again, Brazil could fail to make it out of group in both tournaments and the damage not end up being so bad.
Really good analysis here. Everyone looks to MSN for Barcelona but the rest of the team, like Pique and Rakitic, have been crucial in Enrique’s system. Things would be a lot different if those players consistently under-performed.
He could get to over 100 international goals. Plenty of time. Of course, as the author said it will all be questioned and critiqued unless he has a legendary career.
He will be missed by fans and team-mates alike, but with Suarez so important nowafter his rapid adaptation last season and Messi and Neymar back with a bang in this match, it is clear that there is no room in Barca’s attack any more for one of their most popular players of the last few years
I’m sorry but that’s a dumb statement. Barcelona going into the season with just three experienced forwards for a 4-3-3, no matter their quality and understanding, is just asking for things to go wrong. At least Pedro provides experience and quality. There’s plenty of room for him and that shouldn’t even be a question.
Certainly possible. If he, at the very least, maintains his level from last season and then starts to improve upon it then there’s no reason he can’t be. It will be something worth keeping an eye on.
I wouldn’t say it’s destined to fail but Brazil has too much talent/promise in similar areas to make them all second-best to one player. It’s fair to say the team looked good, maybe even better and more cohesive in the attacking sense, without Neymar when they played Venezuela. We’ll see how things go in the knockout rounds.
Well the immaturity won out. Daft decision. He’ll learn though. So brilliant in the first game and could have made the tournament his own.
My piece for Page 2 Sports on how the Copa America stars performed in the first round of games.
Neymar has been brilliant this second season and looks very much like the teenager from Santos playing for fun. The author makes some great points throughout as he’s suggested, to an extent, that Neymar is comfortable being the Robin to Lionel Messi’s Batman. He’s definitely grown this season tactically and physically as he looked like he was just trying to fit in last season and not step on toes, this season he is very much part of the team. And a major part at that.