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Neymar to PSG: Why is the Brazilian worth £198m?

August 3, 2017 10:46 AM
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Neymar to PSG: Why is the Brazilian worth £198m?

Why are Paris Saint-Germain prepared to pay £198m for Neymar? Jose Mourinho believes the Brazilian is worth every penny and we look at the reasons why...

Responding to the imminent world-record fee, Mourinho said: "I don't think [Neymar] is expensive...Neymar is one of the best players in the world, commercially he is very strong and for sure PSG thought about it."

The 25-year-old was ranked as the most valuable player in Europe's top five leagues at £186m, according to a report published in June by research group CIES Football Observatory.

Just over one month later and PSG look set to exceed that valuation by £12m, meeting the Brazilian's £198m buy-out clause at Barcelona.

The valuations published in June appeared to place considerable weighting on youth, with Dele Alli (£139m) and Harry Kane (£137m) ranking second and third - above Lionel Messi (£136m).

The research group also factor book value, player performance, position, experience, international status, contract length, achievements, competition level and results.

Neymar is still only 25 years old and has already won two La Liga titles, the Champions League and scored 105 goals in 186 appearances in all competitions since joining Barcelona from Santos in 2009.

On the world stage, Neymar has already racked up 77 senior caps and netted 52 goals for Brazil.

In terms of contract status, he signed a new five-year deal with Barcelona in October last year, which also contributes to his record-breaking price tag.

Neymar clocked 2,652 minutes in La Liga last season and despite being the less prolific at finishing than team-mates Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, still averaged 0.44 goals per game.

However, he created almost as many assists as goals, on average, in addition to creating more than three chances a game on average.

Of those chances, one typically came from a set-play, while the Brazil international was also 84 per cent more likely to score direct from a free-kick than the average forward in Europe's top five leagues.

Neymar also recorded higher averages for tackles and duels won, revealing a less recognised desire to challenge for the ball.

Less surprisingly, his 11 dribbles per game exceeded the average of three per 90 minutes, in addition to taking more touches and making more passes.

His seven crosses per game also dwarfed La Liga's average of three, and his dribbling skills resulted in winning 60 per cent more fouls for his side than other forwards.

In terms of weaknesses, at just 5ft 7in Neymar won fewer aerials than his European counterparts and, as a result, only scored one headed goal in La Liga last term - 64 per cent below the average European forward.

Neymar is the third-most marketable player in the world behind Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, according to the Brandtix Sport Index.

The index ranks players out of 1,000 using an algorithm that factors a combination of social media followers and on-pitch data.

He has 169.2m followers across Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and has gained 758,000 in the last week - only Ronaldo has a bigger fan base on social media with 285.5m.

More than a third of Neymar's fans are from his homeland Brazil (34 per cent), followed by France (17 per cent), Spain (10 per cent), USA (5 per cent) and Argentina (3 per cent).

In fact, Neymar has nearly four times as many fans as PSG's 43.3m social followers and numerous posts on his Instagram account have surpassed 2m likes.

Neymar looks set to finalise his blockbuster move to PSG over the next two days and become the world's most expensive player.

But Mourinho has revealed concerns over the implications of record-breaking fee: "I think he's expensive in the fact that now you are going to have more players at £100m, you are going have more players at £80m and more players at £60m. And I think that's the problem.

"So I think the problem is not Neymar, I think the problem is the consequences of Neymar."

The £198m fee would set a new world record and mark a 110 per cent increase from Paul Pogba's £93.25m world-record transfer from Juventus to Manchester United last season.


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