Neymar hits back at FIFA World Cup 2018 critics after scoring against Costa Rica

Agence France-Presse, Saint Petersburg | ByAgence France-Presse
Jun 23, 2018 08:13 AM IST

Brazil had to battle until injury time against Costa Rica on Friday before Philippe Coutinho and Neymar scored, putting the five-time winners back on track for the FIFA World Cup 2018 last 16.

Neymar rounded on his critics and defended his emotional reaction to scoring in Brazil’s 2-0 World Cup win over Costa Rica after he broke down in tears at the final whistle.

Neymar celebrates a goal during the FIFA World Cup 2018 match between Brazil and Costa Rica on Friday.(AFP)
Neymar celebrates a goal during the FIFA World Cup 2018 match between Brazil and Costa Rica on Friday.(AFP)

A largely frustrating afternoon for the five-time world champions was forgotten thanks to two goals in stoppage time.

Stay tuned with breaking news on HT Channel on Facebook. Join Now

Philippe Coutinho broke the deadlock before Neymar tapped home with virtually the last kick of the game.

“Not everyone knows what I went through to get here,” he posted on Twitter and Instagram.

“Even parrots can talk, but walking the walk... not everyone does it. I cried out of happiness, overcoming, grit and desire to win.

“Things were never easy in my life, so why would they be now? The dream - no, the OBJECTIVE - is still alive. Congratulations for the performance, guys.”

The world’s most expensive player was making just his fourth appearance after breaking a bone in his foot in February.

And Brazil coach Tite admitted the Paris Saint-Germain star is still not fully match-fit.

READ | FIFA World Cup 2018: Neymar can’t take sole responsibility for Brazil - Tite

“He needs some time to resume his high standard. Before then there is a team that has to be strong and not depend on him.”

Neymar’s emotions at the end highlighted Brazil’s relief at getting their first win of the tournament after being held 1-1 by Switzerland in their opening match.

Tite fell to the floor as he sped onto the pitch following Coutinho’s strike.

However, there is some concern in Brazil that Neymar’s tears are a sign he may struggle to handle the pressure against tougher opposition as the tournament progresses.

“It’s not normal to cry in the second game of a World Cup,” Brazil’s biggest newspaper, O Globo, said.

“A team needs to demonstrate mental strength, not fragility. Genuine or not, Neymar’s crying is worrying.”

Catch all the Latest Asian Games 2023 News
Story Saved
Live Score
Saved Articles
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Friday, December 08, 2023
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now