The Brazil prodigy has been touted as the game's next big star, and Al Hain-Cole expects him to thrive alongside Lionel Messi and Co. after leaving Santos for Camp Nou€57 million signing Neymar takes to the field next season, allowing Europe the opportunity to see what all the fuss is about.
William Hill seem convinced the striker will make an immediate impact, offering odds of just 4/6 (1.67) on him hitting the back of the net on his full Liga debut.
The forward scored on his first start for both Santos and Brazil, but you can get odds of 11/10 (2.10) on him failing to replicate that feat for the Blaugrana.
Tito Vilanova will be optimistic that Neymar can remove some of the attacking burden from Messi’s shoulders, as the Argentine’s 46 goals represented 41% of the team’s combined tally last season, and made closest team-mate Cesc Fabregas’ total of 11 look rather paltry.
However, despite currently boasting a record of 156 goals in 258 games for club and country, the youngster is favoured at even money (2.00) to manage just 13 or less in his first Spanish league season.
This seems slightly pessimistic considering the number of chances Barcelona create, as David Villa and Zlatan Ibrahimovic managed 18 and 16 goals respectively in their first seasons in Catalonia, even with Messi taking centre stage.
While he may not prove quite as prolific in Europe as in South America, it seems reasonable to expect the Barca new-boy to provide between 14 and 17 league goals, and you can back that at generous 11/5 (3.20) odds, while that price is also available on him exceeding 18.
The Brazilian star has previously named Cristiano Ronaldo and Messi as role models, and their domination of Spanish football would make it very difficult for him to finish the season as La Liga’s top scorer, available at 9/1 (10.00) odds.
Ronaldo or Messi have also collected the Golden Boot in each of the last six Champions League campaigns, but you can get odds of 14/1 (15.00) on Neymar taking that honour in his first season in Europe.
|Neymar to score between 14 and 17 La Liga goals in 2013-14 at 11/5 (3.20) with William Hill
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Al Hain-Cole is a Liverpool fan, experienced tipster and avid follower of European football. He specialises in accumulators and if you would like to read more from Al you can follow him on Twitter here.
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