Laudrup's comments about Neymar
Former Danish international Michael Laudrup created a wave of controversy after his comments on Spanish television for criticizing Neymar during the coverage of Saturday’s Leganes-Barcelona LaLiga match. The comment whereby he reprimanded Neymar for showing-off was not well received by Barça fans and is not the first time this type of accusation has been leveled at the Brazilian player. Neymar’s particular style of play is based on his flair which is seen in certain quarters as excessive showboating on occasion. This can be a motive of irritation for many opponents and has been the source of the player receiving many over vigorous tackles. In LaLiga, the Brazilian striker has encountered these problems in matches against the likes of Athletic, Atlético and now against Leganés, where he was targeted for some ferocious tackling by the home side.
It’s his personal style of play state his defenders and they are right. He’s a great player and has his own unique style of playing the game. Interpreting football in this way generates no objection. However on those occasions where his flair is nothing more than showing-off it can be perceived in a different way and this certainly the case when Barça face the weaker sides (almost all teams are weaker compared to Barcelona) with the result of the match a foregone conclusion. In these instances his style of play can be seen as ridiculing the opposition.
“He does it when the game is 0-0 or four nil”, claimed one of the player’s admirers and that is true. However when he tries these stunts with the game tied at 0-0 it’s seen as part of his game plan but’s it’s projected in a different way with a 4-0 score line. Messi doesn’t play this way akin to his off the field personality. At the end of the day, each individual has his own style but if I was close to Neymar I’d advise him to heed Laudrup’s words. The Barça No. 11 is creating an unwanted reputation and this will only generate unnecessary tension among rival defenders in future games.
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