Only the biggest stars in the world are known simply by one name.
Neymar is one of them.
The Brazilian winger, who plays for Paris Saint-Germain, is one of the top soccer players in the world. The 30-year-old Neymar is among the sport’s most prolific goal scorers, having tallied over 400 career goals since making his professional debut in 2009.
Neymar signed with La Liga’s Barcelona in 2013 after transferring from Brazilian club Santos in exchange for roughly $76 million. He joined the French club Paris Saint-Germain in 2017 for what was a then-record $263 million transfer fee.
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Neymar has since become one of just 12 players to have scored more than 100 goals for three different teams (Santos, Barcelona, PSG).
Here are five things to know about Neymar ahead of what could be his record-breaking World Cup performance.
Neymar’s full name is Neymar da Silva Santos, Jr.
His first name is well known. The rest of it, not so much. He was named after his father Neymar Santos Sr., a soccer player himself until his early 30s who now manages his son’s career as an advisor.
Neymar played at the same youth academy Pelé once did
Neymar, with his goal-scoring and playmaking ability, often draws comparisons to Pelé. The two Brazilian stars both began their careers with Santos FC, with Pelé joining the club in 1956 and Neymar in 2003.
Neymar is the second all-time leading goalscorer in Brazil’s history
He trails only … Pelé. Neymar has scored 74 goals for Brazil in 119 games, which is just three behind Pelé, who had 77 goals in 92 games. Neymar's chase of Pelé’s scoring record will be one of the top storylines entering the 2022 World Cup.
Neymar was the fourth-highest paid athlete in 2022
Neymar earned $95 million in 2022, according to Forbes, making him the fourth-highest paid athlete of the year. He earned $70 million on the field and $25 million off the field, with endorsements that include Puma and Red Bull. Of the three athletes ahead of Neymar, two are fellow soccer stars. PSG teammate Lionel Messi leads the way with earnings of $130 million and Cristiano Ronaldo is third, behind LeBron James ($121.2 million), at $115 million.
Neymar is the subject of a Netflix docuseries titled “Neymar: The Perfect Chaos”
Want to learn more about Neymar? Netflix has you covered. Here’s the logline for the biographical docuseries:
“Beloved worldwide but also a lightning rod for critics, Neymar shares the highs and lows of his personal life and brilliant football career.”