The iconic midfielder offered advice to his ex-club mate, instructing him to think about how he behaves on the pitch, but hailed him as a hard-working and humble player
Former Barcelona captain Xavi believes former team-mate Neymar must think about how he acts on the pitch, insisting that what is acceptable in Brazil does not go down well in Europe.
The midfielder was referring to an altercation Neymar found himself involved in during the final minutes of the Catalans’ 3-1 Copa del Rey final win over Athletic Bilbao, when the Basque players had taken offence at a piece of extravagent skill he attempted.
And Xavi used the example to question the 23-year-old’s mentality, stating the young Brazilian had to cut out the elements of his game that simply were not tolerated in the European arena.
“He needs to seriously think about how he should act. Maybe that sort of thing is accepted in Brazil, but it’s a thorny issue in Spain,” Xavi told Sport .
“He should reflect about it because he’s an extraordinary, hard-working and humble lad, but he has that Brazilian attitude, according to which such things are part of the show, while here they’re seen as a lack of respect.”
Neymar has not only been accused of unsporting behaviour during his stint in Spain by opponents but team-mates as well, with Xavi himself caught on video berrating the forward while Barcelona celebrated winning their treble with an open top bus parade on Sunday.
“He was trying to take my shoes off and they were pushing me when I was standing on the edge of the bus. I told them to stop messing around and to focus on the fans, since the parade is for them,” he added.
“It’s alright to have three or four beers, but the parade is for the supporters, to thank them, and you can’t just be in your own world.”
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