Brazil U23 national team coach Rogerio Micale has called into question some of Neymar’s behaviour during the Rio Olympics men’s soccer competition, although he stopped short of criticising the player.
The Brazilian superstar has yet to catch fire at the Olympics and Micale’s side have failed to score a goal in their opening two Group A matches.
Neymar has been widely reported to have been partying excessively during the tournament, and it’s unclear how much this has affected his form on the pitch.
The 24-year-old drew a blank against the South Africa under-23 side and then did the same against Iraq.
Micale, who called into question but didn’t specify the nature of Neymar’s behaviour, has nonetheless defended his player, wary that too much criticism might see the Barcelona star ditch his international duties.
He told the Daily Mail, “Neymar will one day become the best player in the world and we need to respect him. He is young and I know that sometimes he behaves in a way we might not agree with, but at his age wouldn’t we do the same things he does, having everything he has?”
He added, “If we don’t respect our best players they might not want to be with us any more.”
Brazil complete their group-stage action at the Olympics on Wednesday when they take on Denmark at the Fonte Nova Arena in Salvador.