Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar cast doubt on his future with Brazil last month – and teammate Danilo believes the 29-year-old must choose his comments wisely
Neymar “has to be careful” to avoid unwanted attention over his future with the Brazil national team.
That is the warning of Selecao teammate Danilo, who admits it is deemed “scandalous” for the Paris Saint-Germain superstar, 29, to be considering retirement from the international stage while in the prime of his career.
In a shocking update last month, Neymar suggested he could walk away from Brazil after the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
“I think it’s my last World Cup,” he told DAZN . “I see it as my last because I don’t know if I have the strength of mind to deal with football any more.”
The former Barcelona forward has not made a concrete decision on his future with Brazil, yet Danilo feels he faces a heightened level of scrutiny.
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“It is complicated,” the Juventus defender told Goal of Neymar’s potential retirement next year. “Players from other teams talk about this subject. Toni Kroos retired from the German national team recently. It’s not as scandalous as when Ney talks.
“He has to be careful, but if he said that, he has his reasons. Certainly, the people who work with him think and analyse the situation.
“It is a very personal matter, difficult to give an opinion, because I’m not able to feel the same feelings as him.”
Neymar is Brazil’s second highest scorer with 70 goals, behind footballing legend Pele on 77, and he has won the fourth most caps after Cafu, Roberto Carlos and Dani Alves.
Although the World Cup and Copa America have evaded him during his 11-year senior international career, he captained his country to the gold medal at Rio 2016, their home Olympics.
Danilo reaffirmed Neymar’s importance to Brazil, saying: “I hope he is with us for a long time because it is very nice to see him play up close.”
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The former Manchester City defender also insisted Neymar remains the talisman for the national team, adding: “Without a doubt, it does not even need to be said.
“Most people don’t know him up close. Because I have known him since my Santos days, I can easily say that I have met very few players who are as passionate about playing football as he is.”
Neymar and Danilo spent two seasons together at Santos between 2010 and 2011, while the latter has scored one goal in 43 appearances for Brazil since his debut in 2011.