In much the same way that waxing lyrical over the week-in, week-out performances of the brilliant Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo becomes unfairly passe over time, talking about the awesome quality of Brazilian starlet Neymar is also quickly falling into that megastar bracket.
Neymar, who is ridiculously still so young at just 20, clocked up his 150th, 151st and 152nd career goals on Saturday as he lead Santos to a 4-nil whitewash at Cruzeiro. Incredibly that was his 7th career hat-trick: 5 for Santos (4 in Campeonato Brasileiro, 1 in Copa Libertadores) and 2 for Brazil.
Perhaps the most interesting narrative resulting from the match related to the huge popularity enjoyed by the young Brazilian.
After setting up Felipe Anderson with a super surge down the left hand side and precise cutback, Neymar received an amazing response from the home crowd. A loud number of Cruzeiro fans began applauding and bellowing out Neymar’s names from the stands in one of the most brilliant scenes of the year so far.
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There was another excellent moment which highlighted just what a draw Neymar is throughout Brazil.
As the teams ran out for the kick, one cheeky Cruzeiro mascot took a gamble choosing to make a beeline for Neymar once the opening pomp had ended. The mascot was wearing a Cruzeiro shirt, however he quickly revealed a Santos jersey underneath the blue home kick, and Neymar warmly signed the white shirt with a marker handed to him by the whippersnapper.
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Individual video highlights of Neymar’s shift versus Cruzeiro can be seen below.
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