Neymar’s father says Lionel Messi is the reason his son is at Barcelona

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Neymar joined Barcelona from Santos in the summer of 2013, and almost immediately formed a lethal partnership with the five-time Ballon d’Or winner, helping the Catalan to two La Liga titles, a Champions League and Club World Cup crown thus far.

The Brazilian last week signed a contract extension that will keep him at the Camp Nou into 2021. And Neymar da Silva Santos Sr. said Junior’s joy at playing alongside Messi is why he’s a Barcelona player.

“We all know who Messi is and what he means. He is the idol of my son and for him is a pleasure being at his side,” Neymar Sr. told Cope.

“He is always happy for playing together and he is playing here for Messi.

“If Messi and [Cristiano] Ronaldo never existed probably Neymar never existed too; the same with Pele and Maradona, both inspired a lot of players.”

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