Neymar finally admits to 'exaggerated reactions'

Neymar (Getty Images)
Neymar (Getty Images)

Rio de Janeiro - Neymar has tackled critics who derided his play-acting at the World Cup, admitting he "overreacts" and blaming his "brat" like behaviour on his inner child.

READ: Pochettino rules out Bale signing

The Brazilian superstar was widely lambasted in Russia for his theatrical reactions to challenges which often left the world's most expensive footballer wincing and rolling on the ground.

"Boot studs on the shins, kick in the spine, stomp on the foot, you may think I overreact, and sometimes I do, but for real? I suffer on the pitch, but you have no idea what I go through outside of it," he said in comments on a television commercial for a razor blade.

The Paris Saint-Germain forward, speaking in Portuguese with English subtitles, continued "You may all think I've fallen too much, but the reality is I did not fall, I crumbled."

"And that hurts more than anyone stepping on your post op ankle," he added, alluding to the surgery on the injury he suffered back in February.

"When I act like a brat, it isn't because I'm a spoiled child, but because I still haven't learned to deal with my frustrations.

"There's still a boy inside of me, sometimes it dazzles the world. Other times it pisses every one off.

"And my fight is to keep this boy alive, but inside of me, not inside the field."

He adds: "You can keep throwing rocks at me, or you can throw your rocks away and help me get up. Because when I do get up the whole of Brazil gets up with me."

This is not the first time Neymar has addressed his taxing World Cup.

On his return from Russia he took a tongue in cheek swipe at his detractors with an online video teaching children how to dive.

And last week, in an interview with AFP, Neymar disclosed he "didn't want to see a ball, or to see any more football played" after Brazil's premature exit.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
What is your favourite sport to watch on TV?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Rugby
42% - 8854 votes
Cricket
11% - 2267 votes
Football
19% - 4045 votes
Athletics
2% - 524 votes
Boxing
1% - 187 votes
Cycling
2% - 490 votes
Golf
5% - 1034 votes
Motorsport
9% - 1789 votes
Tennis
3% - 721 votes
Water sports
1% - 195 votes
American sports
1% - 261 votes
MMA / WWE / UFC
3% - 661 votes
Vote