Neymar Not Worried About Ballon D'Or

Updated: 26 December 2016 15:28 IST

Neymar said that he is not bothered about not being named for the FIFA Ballon d'or award and plays football to be happy and not for individual honours.

Neymar Not Worried About Ballon D'Or
Neymar said he is not bothered about not being named for the FIFA Ballon d'Or award © AFP

Barcelona forward Neymar said that he is not bothered about not being named for the FIFA Ballon d'Or award and plays football to be happy and not for individual honours.

In an interview published on the official La Liga website on Sunday, Neymar was quoted as saying," I'm not going to die if I don't win it."

"It's obvious that (the Ballon d'Or) is a source of motivation. Above all, I want to be happy and at Barcelona I'm happy," the 24-year-old Brazilian added, reports Xinhua news agency.

Neymar was a Ballon d'Or finalist for the first time last year, eventually missing out to teammate Lionel Messi, who claimed the prize for a fifth time.

The 2016 award was contested by Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Antoine Griezmann, which was eventually won by the Real Madrid star.

Neymar said Barcelona are upbeat about their chances of winning La Liga this season, despite being three points behind Real Madrid, who also have a game in hand.

"There is still a long way to go," the former Santos prodigy said. "We are just focused on our matches. We can't be worried about Real Madrid. Last year we were 11 points ahead of second but we only won the league in the last match of the season. It's a tough competition and every game is difficult."

Of his relationship with fellow Blaugrana forwards Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, Neymar said: "We are creating history and we are getting better. We want to be happy on the pitch and stay together."

"It's a big pleasure and a little bit strange because we are Brazilian, Argentinian and Uruguayan. We're rivals in international football but we have a great friendship. We're always joking around with each other. It makes me very happy to have people like that in football."

The Barcelona No. 11 also had the highest praise for teammate Andres Iniesta, who he believes is peerless in world football.

"Andres (Iniesta) is the best midfielder I have ever seen, for his quality, for everything," Neymar said. "He's incomparable because he's very, very different. Andres has an elegance and a classiness that distinguishes him from the rest."

 

Highlights
  • Cristiano Ronaldo won Ballon d'Or award this year
  • Neymar was not among the finalists for the FIFA's highest award
  • Neymar was a Ballon d'Or finalist for the first time last year
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