Neymar overtakes Pele as Brazil’s all-time men’s record scorer


Neymar has overtaken Pele to grow to be Brazil’s all-time men’s prime scorer, netting twice in his nationwide workforce 5-1 win in a World Cup qualifying match towards Bolivia within the Amazon metropolis of Belém.

The Al Hilal ahead was tied with Pele, who scored 77 targets for Brazil between 1957 and 1971. Neymar now has 79 targets in 125 worldwide appearances.

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“I never imagined reaching this record. I want to say that I am not better player than Pele,” mentioned Neymar after the sport. “I always wanted to make my own story, write my name in the history of Brazilian football and the national team. And today I did that.”

Brazil ladies’s ahead Marta holds the nation’s all-time record with 115 targets in 171 video games.

Neymar’s record-breaking aim got here after a low cross into the penalty field, which the striker completed with accuracy from shut vary. He celebrated with a punch within the air, as Pele often did.

Earlier within the match, Neymar missed a penalty within the seventeenth minute, which goalkeeper Guillermo Viscarra saved.

Pelé’s Foundation acknowledged Neymar’s achievement.

“Congratulations, Neymar Jr, for surpassing the King in goals for the Brazilian National Team in official FIFA matches,” it said on social media. “Surely Pelé is applauding you today!”

Pelé died from most cancers Dec. 29 in Sao Paulo on the age of 82.

Striker Rodrygo, who additionally scored two targets towards Bolivia, mentioned he is nonetheless very a lot a Neymar fan.

“Neymar is very much a hero of mine,” Rodrygo mentioned. “This will be in my memory, this was a very special day.”

New Brazil coach Fernando Diniz mentioned Neymar got here to play for Brazil “to score goals, break records, show that he is very much willing to live this [with the national team.]”

“He is a great hero,” Diniz mentioned. “People have to recognize it and accept it. He doesn’t do anything to get this adoration he gets from the crowd, it is because of the natural talent he has.”

Neymar’s most up-to-date match for Brazil earlier than the victory over Bolivia was the World Cup quarterfinal loss to Croatia. He left Qatar with doubts about his future within the nationwide workforce and didn’t play the Selecao’s first three video games this 12 months.

The former Santos, Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain star scored in his Brazil debut in a 2010 pleasant towards the United States.

Neymar guided Brazil to the Confederations Cup title in 2013 however has but to make them a World Cup closing, reaching quarterfinals twice — 2018 and 2022 — and the semifinal in 2014, after they suffered a humiliating 7-1 defeat to Germany on house soil.

He missed out on Brazil’s 2019 Copa America triumph by means of harm and was on the dropping aspect in 2021’s closing towards Argentina.

The 31-year-old has loved a glittering membership profession with honours, together with two LaLiga titles, a Champions League trophy, 5 Ligue 1 titles and a Copa Libertadores.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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