Neymar respects Lionel Messi a lot.
It is in this context that he decided to leave Barcelona so Messi can take all the spotlight.
This was revealed by Neymar’s father, Neymar Sr., as amongst the major reasons why his son opted to transfer to Paris Saint Germain.
Neymar, 25, completed his world-record €222-million move to the Ligue 1 giants last week.
This after he joined forces with Messi at Barca for four victorious seasons at Camp Nou.
Neymar Sr. said his son never thought of challenging Messi’s position out of respect for the Argentina superstar.
“Messi is the star and will always be the star. Not only because of the love and respect that Neymar has for Leo, he is his idol,’’ explained the elder Neymar.
He added: “Imagine that everyone said that Neymar has to be Messi’s substitute, he does not want to be his substitute. You have to leave Messi, he is the idol of Barcelona.’’
The father also told reporters that his son has to make it on his own and accept the challenge he has at PSG. “I think my son has been a man, shown respect (to Messi) and now he has to go his own.’’
He also defended the younger Neymar by saying his move to PSG was not meant for the latter to win a Ballon d’Or, a prestigious award Messi has already won five times.
PSG opened their 2017-18 Ligue 1 campaign with a 2-0 win against visiting Amines over the weekend.
Neymar did not see action as some papers regarding his status to play were still being finalized.
This coming Sunday could be his debut for the multi-titled club.
Unai Emery’s men travel to Guingamp and will shoot for a second straight victory.
This time, Neymar could be seen in action for his new team.
He has less burden to worry about after his father has come to his defence, clearing things regarding his decision to sever ties with Barca and Messi.
Even though he is now with PSG, Neymar Jr. will always be proud of everything he did for Barca.