HomeFootball NewsNeymar overtakes Pele milestone

Neymar overtakes Pele milestone

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Neymar has now surpassed Pele to claim the title of Brazil’s all-time leading men’s goal scorer. He accomplished this feat by scoring twice during Brazil’s resounding 5-1 victory in a World Cup qualifying match against Bolivia.

He was previously on par with Pele, who had amassed 77 goals for Brazil during his illustrious international career spanning from 1957 to 1971. Neymar’s latest achievements have propelled him to a total of 79 goals in 125 appearances for the national team.

Neymar’s historic goal was the result of a precise finish from close range, capitalizing on a well-placed low cross into the penalty box. After finding the back of the net, he celebrated with a triumphant fist pump, a gesture reminiscent of Pele’s iconic celebrations.

Before his record-breaking goal, Neymar had an earlier opportunity in the 17th minute, but his penalty was saved by goalkeeper Guillermo Viscarra.

“I never imagined reaching this record. I want to say that I am not better player than Pele,” said Neymar in the aftermath. “I always wanted to make my own story, write my name in the history of Brazilian football and the national team. And today I did that.”

Pelé’s official X (formerly Twitter) account paid tribute to Neymar’s milestone.

“Congratulations, Neymar Jr, for surpassing the King in goals for the Brazilian National Team in official FIFA matches,” it said on social media. “Surely Pelé is applauding you today!”

Neymar’s most recent appearance for Brazil before the victory over Bolivia came in the World Cup quarter-final loss to Croatia. Following that defeat in Qatar, he harboured uncertainties about his future in the national team and consequently sat out Brazil’s initial three matches this year.

The 31-year-old has enjoyed a remarkable club career, amassing numerous honours including two LaLiga titles, a Champions League trophy, five Ligue 1 titles, and a Copa Libertadores triumph.

Jon Fisher
Jon Fisher
Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.

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