Neymar biography in English
Neymar fact sheet:
Full name: Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior
Birth date: February 5, 1992
Age: 22 years old
Birth place: Mogi das Cruzes (São Paulo), Brazil
Height: 1,74m (5’7”)
Weight: 65kg (143.3 lbs)
Field position: Forward
First professiona club: Santos FC
Shirt/jersey number in Brazil and Barcelona: #11
Professional club career debut: March 7, 2009 – Itápolis vs Santos FC
Brazilian National Team debut: July 26, 2010 – United States vs Brazil
Current club: FC Barcelona (since 2013)
Nicknames: Joia, Juninho
Neymar biography and profile
Neymar arrived to Santos back in 2003, to start playing for the club’s youth categories. He started becoming popular very early and way before turning a professional player. When he turned 14, he traveled to Madrid in Spain in order to go through some trials at the Merengues and according to the reports he was immediately accepted. However, Santos FC managed to hold on to their crown jewelry because the Brazilian club president at the time, Marcelo Teixeira, offered 1 million euros to Neymar‘s father on the condition that the prodigious player stayed at the club until he turned professional.
Neymar had his debut in Santos shortly after he turned 17 (March 7, 2009), in a away match against Itápolis. His first goal as professional player arrived one week later on March 15 (2009), in a 3-0 win against Mogi Mirim. During his first years in the first team, Neymar shared most of the media focus with his good friend and teammate until 2012, Paulo Henrique Ganso, who is now playing for São Paulo. Neymar didn’t get any silverware during his first year as a professional footballer, since Santos finished 2nd in the “Campeonato Paulista” and 12nd in the “Campeonato Brasileiro“.
In 2010, Santos won the “Campeonato Paulista” for the first time since Neymar had joined the squad and together with Robinho, Paulo Henrique Ganso and André, the team was often called as “Meninos da Vila“, in a clear reference to the fact that several key players had been developed in the club’s youth ranks. Later that year, Neymar won his second career title and this time it was the “Copa do Brasil” trophy (the Brazilian Cup). The Brazilian forward became the competition’s top goalscorer, with 11 goals. His performances were already impressing a lot of scouts from European big clubs by then and during the Old Continent’s summer transfer season in August, Chelsea has allegedly made a move on Neymar that would end up failing miserably after Pelé‘s intervention. The all-time legend talked with the Brazilian youngster and convinced him that the best decision at that time was to stay put in Santos. The Brazilian club finished 8th in the “Campeonato Brasileiro” at the end of that year.
The 2011 year kicked off with all attention turned on to Neymar Jr. He was already being regarded as the best footballer playing in Brazil and there was a big amount of expectation to see how he would keep improving in the months and years ahead. Santos won the “Campeonato Paulista” for the second year in a row, the club’s 19th state title. However, the biggest accomplishment took place in the “Copa dos Libertadores“, with Santos beating Peñarol in the final and Neymar scoring one of the winning goals, during the second leg 2-1 win. The Brazilian club were chasing that trophy for 48 years… Neymar scored the best goal of his short career that year, in a game against Ronaldinho and Atletico Paranaense. That goal allowed him to win the FIFA Ferenc Puskás award for the best goal of 2011, in a ceremony that was held a few months later in Switzerland, in January of 2012. Before that and deep in December 2011, Santos faced Barcelona in the FIFA Club World Cup and basically got crushed by the Spanish giants, with an impressive 4-0 final result. Neymar recognized that Barcelona had a far superior team and that his side had been taught how to play football that day. That was probably the first big step Neymar has made to open the doors towards signing for Barcelona sooner or later.
On August 24 of 2011, Neymar became a father for the first time in his life, at the age of 19. The mother was 17 and despite asking for her anonymity on a first stage, her identity was later revealed as being Carolina Dantas. Neymar son was a boy and was called Davi Lucca, but the Brazilian player’s relationship with Carolina was far from perfect, leaving few alternatives than paying the mother a monthly child support pension of 30.000 reais (roughly 13.000 US dollars). With the Brazilian National Team, Neymar had his first taste of participating in an important tournament with the Copa America, in July of 2011. Things didn’t go as the Brazilian people certainly expected and the “Canarinha” got knocked out in the competition’s quarter-finals, in the penalty-shout decision against Paraguay.
In 2012 Neymar led Santos to some more success in the “Campeonato Paulista“, for the third straight time. On May of that year, Neymar became Santos highest goalscorer since the “Pelé era”, after scoring another 2 goals against Bolivar, in the “Copa dos Libertadores” and reaching his 106th goal for the club. Santos wouldn’t get lucky in that competiton though and got thrown out by Corinthians, in a two-leg semi-finals. The second trophy Neymar won in 2012 was the “Recopa Sul-Americana“, after beating Universidad de Chile in the final.
As for 2013, we can safely say that it definitely allowed Neymar to also confirm his star player status in the Brazilian National Team. The Confederations Cup was awaited with high expectation and Neymar didn’t defraud anyone, especially in the final against Spain. Brazil beat the current European and World champions and Neymar performed at his very best level. However, Neymar‘s summer of 2013 will always be remembered for the time when he finally signed for Barcelona and got to initiate his journey in Europe. The Spanish club paid 50 million euros for the Brazilian star, for a 5-year deal that will allow Neymar to earn 7 million euros per year, plus a 1 million euros bonus if he ends up winning the FIFA Balon d’Or, an award which his current teammate Lionel Messi has won for the past 4 straight years and with that always leaving Cristiano Ronaldo behind him. Earlier in the year, Neymar has also announced that he was on a relationship with a new girlfriend, the Brazilian actress from Globo, Bruna Marquezine.