Brazilian football superstar Neymar may show off his diving tricks again at the World Cup in Qatar after he pulled off a hilarious stunt to win a penalty in a friendly match in Osaka.
Around the 30th minute of the friendly match between Neymar’s Paris St Germain and Gamba Osaka on Monday (25 July), the 30-year-old winger was attacking in the Japanese club’s penalty box when he was apparently tackled illegally by defender Genta Miura.
However, slow motion videos – several of which have gone viral – show clearly that while Muira had attempted to tackle Neymar, he pulled back his left leg and there was no contact between the two players. Cue Neymar and his infamous Oscar-winning dive – again – as he fell like a ton of bricks and grimaced in “agony”.
The referee did not hesitate to point to the penalty spot, without the aid of a video-assisted referee (VAR). To rub salt in the wound of Gamba Osaka, Neymar took on the responsibility for PSG to convert the penalty successfully and give his club a 2-0 lead at the stage. The French champions eventually won 6-2.
Football fans might recall two infamous incidents during World Cup 2018 in Russia when Neymar stunned millions with his theatrical tricks on the field.
In Brazil’s 2-0 win against Costa Rica in their second Group E match, a defender’s left hand had gently brushed against Neymar, who then fell backward with his hands raised as if he was shot by a sniper. The referee initially pointed to the penalty spot but soon reversed the decision after a VAR review.
Neymar’s playacting reached the stratosphere on social media after Brazil beat Serbia 2-0 in their final Group E match. The Brazilian was attacking towards the touchline when a Serbian player’s right foot clipped against the Brazilian’s left shin. It was not a cynical foul by any measure but Neymar executed five flawless rolls on the ground, earning him a slew of hilarious memes and the wrath of many football fans.
Referees, assistant referees and VAR at the upcoming World Cup could be busy watching Neymar like a hawk if he were to execute his dolphin dives again.
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