5) Already the third best player
The Brazilian sensation is easily the third best player in the world. While the recent Ballon d’Or did not suggest so, there is no doubt that Neymar possesses qualities to topple Messi and Ronaldo in the near future. He is by far the closest rival to the supernatural duo. As Neymar now shies away from Messi’s shadow at PSG, he can now target the unbelievable statistics of Messi and Ronaldo over the years. There were rumours suggesting that his desire to win the Ballon d’Or was one of the prime reasons behind his exit from the Catalan club.
4) World Cup year
It is fair to say that the pressure of the world cup year tends to bring out the best of the player. Big players thrive under pressure and Neymar is not new to pressure. The expectations have always been high from the talented Brazilian attacker. It was the Confederations Cup of 2013, where Neymar truly showed his immaculate talent to the football world. A year later, he set the world alight with his brilliant performances for the Seleccao. It was his injury that virtually put a psychological blow to his team as they were thumped by Germany in the semi finals. With the world cup on the horizon, Neymar will be motivated to take matters into his own hands once again. If he indeed does manage to lead Brazil to glory, he could well break the monopoly of Ronaldo and Messi on the trophy.
3) PSG’s ambition
While much has been made of Neymar’s desire to leave Messi’s shadow as a reason to join PSG, the Parisian club’s relentless ambition is also a huge reason. Despite their 6-1 defeat to Barca last season, the club are agitated to realise their dream of conquering Europe. Their project has only been strengthened further with Neymar’s signature. The likes of Mbappe and Fabinho too are reportedly on their way to Paris, as the club seek further reinforcement. With Neymar’s signing, PSG also have a psychological boost as they now boast one world’s best players. If Mbappe completes a move, PSG’s already star studded attacking lineup would be further blessed. This could well complete the jigsaw and PSG’s dream could be realised coming May in Ukraine. A Champions League title with PSG would go a long way in boosting Neymar’s chances of winning the Ballon D’Or.
Cristiano Ronaldo is now 32. And despite the Portuguese’ performances towards the business end of last season, the signs of decline in his pace and strength were evident throughout the season. On the other hand, Messi has had to take a more central position in recent seasons due to Barca’s inability to truly replace Xavi and ageing Iniesta. As the duo move towards the wrong side of the age, Neymar still has a lot of time. Still 25, Neymar is yet to reach his peak, which in itself is a frightening prospect. At times, Neymar showed last season that he is already the best player in the world. He will only get better and would surely become the first player in ten years to win the Ballon D’Or.
1) Centre of Attention
After years of playing in Messi’s shadows, Neymar has sought for a new challenge. He is now the world’s most expensive player and looks set to remain so for the foreseeable future. Moreover, he is now the central figure at a top club. As the likes of Ribery at Bayern, Messi at Barca and Ronaldo at Madrid, Neymar is now the face of the club. He is the flagship of PSG’s project and has already increased PSG’s popularity with his signature; such stature would allow Neymar to flourish in an environment where he would be the undisputed leader. With him being central to everything PSG do, Neymar will have a plethora of chances to showcase his talents and eventually win the Ballon D’Or.