UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
How Neymar ignored PSG teammate Kylian Mbappé’s Champions League warning
France star Mbappé issued a rallying cry after PSG’s Champions League round of 16 defeat to Bayern Munich on Tuesday.
Paris Saint Germain have been in something of a slump for a few weeks now. After poor results in Ligue 1 and in the French Cup, their latest disappointment was a 1-0 Champions League defeat at home to Bayern Munich on Tuesday. One of the players who was singled out for criticism after the loss to the Germans was Neymar, whose performance was well below par. With Kylian Mbappé not fit enough to start, the French side were looking to the Brazilian to be their talisman but he ultimately came up well short.
What did Mbappé say after the Champions League defeat to Bayern?
To make matters worse, Neymar was caught playing in a poker tournament and eating a hamburger in a well-known fast-food restaurant in the aftermath of the game, which is thought to have left his club distinctly unimpressed. Images of the attacker quickly circulated around the world merely hours after teammate Mbappé had issued a rallying cry at the final whistle against Bayern: “Now we need all our players to be healthy and we will go to Munich to try to qualify. Above all, all our players must stay healthy, sleep well, eat well...”. If the France attacker was aiming that comment at Neymar, then it appears to have fallen on deaf ears.
It would not be the first time that Mbappé has fired warning shots at his teammates, and at the former Barcelona player in particular. When Neymar joined the Parisian giants, he immediately became their biggest star, with a teenage Mbappé not yet the leader in the dressing room that he has now become. Their roles have changed significantly in subsequent years, especially after the ex-Monaco forward agreed to extend his contract at the Parc des Princes; Mbappé has taken over the mantle as PSG’s most important player. There have now been several issues that are thought to have damaged the pair’s relationship, so much so that it was reported in September that Sergio Ramos had intervened in an attempt to bring the two closer together.
Neymar has “pissed all over the club”
Jerôme Rothen, a pundit for French broadcaster RMC Sport, has been one of Neymar’s fiercest critics. The former France international has slammed the Brazilian for his attitude, even more so given the fact that he seemed to be more dedicated than ever at the start of the season. “It’s not the first time he has pissed all over the club, the players, the bosses, his manager, the medical staff... but above all the fans of Paris Saint-Germain. It saddens me to see this...,” he said .
“He doesn’t seem to want to understand things. You can criticise him or tell him what’s wrong but he doesn’t want to listen... The problem is that since he arrived, no one at the club has told him that what he’s doing isn’t right or when something isn’t going well... I’ve been defending him for a while because he hadn’t done anything wrong. (PSG sporting director) Luis Campos recently told us that he had been perfect so far. I want to believe him. But the problem is when we see what he gets up to off the field,” he concluded.