Samuel Eto’o has guaranteed that Brazil and Barcelona superstar Neymar will become the world’s best player after Barca teammate Lionel Messi and Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo relinquish the title.
Neymar has scored 70 goals in 134 matches since joining Barcelona from Santos in the summer of 2013. The 23-year-old Brazil captain was joint-leading scorer in last season’s Champions League which Barcelona won, and has been named a finalist for the coveted Ballon d’Or award given to the game’s best player each year.
Eto’o, who won two Champions League title with Barcelona in his five years with the club, said Neymar, who is already fifth on Brazil’s all-time scoring chart, has only himself to blame if he doesn’t eventually reach the heights expected of him.
“Neymar has a lot of potential. After the era of Messi and Cristiano, surely he will be No. 1,” Eto’o told ESPN Brasil on Thursday.
“But he has to remember that it depends on him a lot. He must remember that he hast the talent and needs to train, train and train, because others do not have his talent.
“Neymar is only 24-years-old, I am 10 years older than him, but he is a leader in Brazil.
“I think, with all he has experienced, the pressure, he may be able to give advice to a 35-year-old who plays with him.”
Eto’o, a three-time Champions League winner, was appointed manager of Turkish side Antalyaspor earlier in the month. The former Cameroon international spoke about the transition from player to coach.