Celtic Star Claims Neymar Won't Reach Messi's Standards Due to His On-Field Antics

Thursday September 14th, 2017

Celtic defender Mikael Lustig has hit out at PSG talisman Neymar in the wake of the Hoops' 0-5 Champions League loss to the Ligue 1 giants. Neymar made himself unpopular with both Celtic fans and players during the match, with the most expensive player in the history of football being condemned for his arguably theatrical moments during the match.

Speaking after Tuesday's emphatic defeat, via Goal, Lustig argued that Neymar, who was booked for diving during the match, would not receive the universal adoration garnered by superstar Lionel Messi, should he continue with the antics. Lustig stated:

"It was the same as usual from Neymar. He is an unbelievable footballer but we have seen the other stuff before and we will see it again. I have said before that it’s part of his game. He tries to over-react a bit to make the defender step off. We will see it again and again.

Steve Welsh/GettyImages

"If he wants to be liked as much as Messi, maybe he needs to stop that.”


Despite his controversial tactics during the match, Neymar was pivotal in his side's attacking dominance over the 2016/17 undefeated SPL champions. Starting in a formidable forward trio alongside Kylian Mbappé and Edinson Cavani, the Brazilian superstar opened the scoring in the 19th minute, and assisted an Mbappé goal later on in the first half.

Celtic find themselves in a very tricky Champions League group, with a return fixture to PSG, and two matches against Bayern Munich and RSC Anderlecht to come. It is likely that the Hoops will target a third-placed group finish, which will see them entered into the knock-out round of the Europa League competition.

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide — from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Grant Wahl, Andy Staples and more — delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.