Neymar is one of the most high-profile players in the world.
The 25-year-old is a key figure for Barcelona and Brazil, arguably the biggest the club in the world and the most decorated country in history.
He’s not exactly the shy and retiring type either.
Give him half a chance and he’ll show of his impressive skills — he’s what we call in the business, a showboater.
So it may surprise you to learn that when he first arrived at Barcelona he was a humble, nervous wreck.
Speaking to Marca, Neymar revealed what it was like walking in to one of the most prestigious changing rooms in the world.
“I would go into the locker room, look to one side and there was Messi,” he said.
“I would look at another and there was Xavi, Iniesta, Pique, Dani Alves … I thought I was inside a video game.
“One day I was playing with them on the console and the next I was in.”
It’s somewhat refreshing to know that even a player of Neymar’s stature was overawed in a situation most of us can’t even comprehend.
“The first month was very complicated,” he continued, “I was ashamed to talk to Messi, they are idols for me. Plus he was practically the youngest.”
The great Neymar, left speechless by Messi’s aura.
These days of course the Brazilian superstar is not short of confidence and many critics would say another dose of humility would perhaps do him good but his revelations provide a fascinating insight to the emotions involved with moving to a big club.
Neymar also spoke about another affect of the move: “When you become famous women appear everywhere but also cousins appear anywhere … of all grades.”
Next season Neymar will be expected to develop further and with Messi now the wrong side of 30 it won’t be long before the Brazilian is considered the premier talent at Barcelona.
Then who knows, maybe another rising star will join and be too intimidated to talk to Neymar.
The circle of life.
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