Neymar Reveals Ambition to Play in MLS, My Football Facts

Neymar Reveals Ambition to Play in MLS

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By Martin Graham | 22nd Feb 2022

Paris Saint-Germain and Brazil forward Neymar has revealed his ambitions to play for a Major League Soccer side before he retires.

The Brazilian ace signed for Barcelona from Santos in 2013; his first foray into Europe. He stayed with the Catalan giants for four years, winning the UEFA Champions League and other trophies before moving on to France with PSG in 2017 in a very controversial move.

Neymar, now 30, is approaching the twilight of his career and has revealed ambitions to play in the USA before returning to Brazil for a second stint in his homeland after which he will hang up his boots.

He is still the subject of a lot of transfer speculation with Barcelona constantly hovering around their former star player. His current deal with PSG will see him stay at the club until he is 33 but with his latest comments, clubs from the MLS could make a move for the star who will bring both footballing and marketing returns.

Neymar, who is quite a divisive figure in the world of football, wants to play in the USA because of the time off the league affords players.

Since moving to Paris, he has suffered recurring injuries and has played only 81 of the 177 games PSG have played since signing him.

“I am excited to return to play in Santos,” Neymar said. “What I really miss is playing in my town. My God, that stadium is marvellous.

“I am also excited to play in the United States for at least one season. It’s a short competition – you have three or four months of vacation.”

MLS to host biggest star yet following Neymar declaration

The MLS has been home to a few stars of football from Europe in recent years. The likes of Thierry Henry, David Beckham, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and many more have plied their trade in the latter stages of their careers in the MLS.

Next season will also see Napoli stalwart and Euro 2020 winner, Lorenzo Insigne, make the move from Naples, Italy to Toronto, Canada to play with Toronto FC in the MLS.

With Neymar declaring his interest in playing in the MLS, many clubs who have purses just as big as some of the biggest names in European football will be falling over each other to secure his signature.

The Brazilian may also be playing with his longtime friend and current PSG team-mate Lionel Messi, who has also been tipped to make a move to the MLS sometime in the future.

Neymar has starred for PSG in the last five years he has been at the club, racking up 91 goals and 56 assists in his time at the club.

He has also won a slew of domestic trophies despite being unavailable for a large number of league games due to his recurring injuries.

However, he has been one of the club’s brightest lights in the Champions League and was pivotal to their first ever Champions League final appearance which they lost narrowly to Bayern Munich in 2020.

PSG are still among the favourites to lift the Champions League in the coming seasons and with Neymar back in the squad following a lengthy injury lay-off, their chances this season have also greatly increased.

They travel to the Santiago Bernabeu in a few weeks to face off against 13-time winners of the trophy Real Madrid in the second leg of their round of 16 fixture.

Martin Graham is an MFF sports writer