Paris Mayor Asks Neymar To ‘Come Back To Earth’ And Win Champions League
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Count Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo among the legion of Parisians happy Neymar did not bolt the French capital to return to Spain this summer. But she’s not content with Neymar sticking with Paris Saint-Germain — she wants the big-eared trophy.
Hidalgo recently spoke with Tele Loisirs about her love for Paris Saint-Germain and her hopes for the club this season. With Neymar’s transfer drama having essentially ended with the close of the transfer window, Hidalgo said she hopes the Brazilian can help bring Champions League glory to PSG.
“Neymar, you will have to help us win,” Hidalgo said, translation via ESPN.com. “I love football, I love this team and I support them passionately.
“We turned the Eiffel Tower red and blue for him (Neymar) — Paris and PSG’s colors. Now, my boy, we love you lots, but we need you to tear it up so we can win the Champions League.
“There will surely be a tricky little moment with the supporters, but if Neymar can bring what we know he can, I think all will be forgiven. Neymar, we need him to come back to Earth and help the team that brought him here and that he has shone for in the past. Paris has welcomed him with open arms.”
No pressure or anything Neymar, but you’ve got the mayor of your city asking you to win the most-coveted trophy in all of club sports.
Hidalgo has a point though. While Neymar has probably annoyed many PSG fans with his flirtations of returning to Barcelona (or possibly even Real Madrid), all will be forgiven if he can help bring Champions League glory to Paris.
Neymar has yet to appear for PSG this season, but he returned from injury with Brazil over the recent international break, scoring a goal and assisting another against Colombia in Miami, taking a nasty blow to the face in the process.
Should Neymar stay healthy (admittedly a big ask), PSG should feel pretty good about its chances of winning the Champions League. The club brought in three-time Champions League-winning goalkeeper Keylor Navas from Real Madrid and nabbed striker Mauro Icardi on loan from Inter Milan. With Neymar, Icardi, Kylian Mbappé, Edison Cavani, Ángel Di María, Pablo Sarabia and Julian Draxler, Thomas Tuchel has the greatest attacking strength and depth available to any club in the world.
Neymar could return to the PSG lineup on Saturday with a home game against Strasbourg. After that, the Parisians welcome Real Madrid to the Parc des Princes to open the Champions League group stage.
One imagines Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo will be watching Neymar pretty closely in that match.