Despite Being Brazil’s Greatest Scorer, Neymar Ditched for $42,920,000 Manchester United Star for Nation’s Biggest Role

Published 09/11/2023, 11:38 AM EDT

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Neymar Jr. has long been regarded as one of the biggest names in soccer. Recently, he even surpassed Pele‘s 77 international goals record, becoming Brazil‘s greatest goalscorer ever. However, it seems that his achievements are not enough to secure him the captain’s armband in the national team. In a surprising move, Brazil coach Fernando Diniz has snubbed Neymar for a prominent Manchester United star.

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For long, Brazil has enjoyed the captainship of veteran defender Thiago Silva. At the age of 38, Silva’s time as captain is drawing to a close, and the team is looking for a suitable replacement. In a recent World Cup qualifier match against Bolivia, the prestigious role was handed to Casemiro, similar to some previous friendly games.

Brazil coach sees Casemiro as a ‘great leader’

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Casemiro, known for his excellent skills as a defensive midfielder has a market value of around $42,920,000. Throughout the years, he has dominated the midfield for Real Madrid in the past and is currently showcasing his talent for Manchester United. He has also been an integral part of the Brazilian squad and is one of the most experienced players on the team.

via Imago

During the Brazil vs Bolivia pre-match Diniz entrusted Casemiro with the captain’s armband. It is worth noting that Casemiro hasn’t been officially confirmed as the new captain. However, according to reports from ‘UOL’, it appears that Diniz is planning to continue with Casemiro in this role. Diniz also had some words of praise for Casemiro, highlighting his leadership qualities and experience.

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“A very big player, extremely technical, he knows a lot about the position,” the coach stated. “We’re picking it up a bit. He’s very intelligent, a great leader in our team”. The 49-year-old further added, ” I’ve had this conversation with him. I think he’ll benefit a lot because he’s got a lot of game, but sometimes he’s hidden by a more protective situation and ends up not showing up as much”.

The decision to snub Neymar for the captaincy may come as a surprise to many, considering his experience as Brazil’s captain during the 2016 Olympics. However, Diniz seems to value Casemiro’s leadership qualities and sees him as the ideal candidate to lead the team. Also after the great result in the World Cup qualifier match, his decision seems to be the right call.

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How did Neymar fare in Brazil vs. Bolivia?

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Brazil’s inaugural World Cup qualifier with Casemiro as captain proved to be a resounding success. The team dominated Bolivia and emerged victorious with a commanding 5-1 scoreline. It was an especially memorable match as Neymar, who had been sidelined since February due to injury, made his return to the field. In a stunning display of skill, the Al Hilal star managed to score two goals.

via Reuters

These achievements hold even greater significance when considering that Neymar has now surpassed Pele’s longstanding record of 77 goals, becoming Brazil’s all-time leading goal scorer. In a heartfelt gesture, Neymar also paid homage to the late legend through an Instagram story. He showcased himself celebrating his goals accompanied by the words “for you king”.

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WATCH THIS STORY- Jimmy Butler Approves $120,000,000 Richer ‘Friend’ Neymar Jr’s Multi-Million Saudi League Deal

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Written by:

Saransh Chauhan

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Saransh Chauhan is a soccer writer at EssentiallySports. With a particular admiration for Lionel Messi, Saransh is committed to exploring every facet of the world's most popular sport in his work. At EssentiallySports, Saransh is known for his versatility as a writer, covering a wide range of topics with an open-minded curiosity that allows him to excel in all areas of the industry.
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Edited by:

Jayant Chhabra

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