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Cavani: Neymar still has a lot to give PSG despite Barcelona links

21:43 GMT+4 02/08/2019
Edinson Cavani Neymar PSG
The forwards haven't always been the best of friends in Paris but the Uruguayan is backing his team-mate to get his head down and deliver on the pitch

Edinson Cavani thinks Neymar can grow as a person after a summer spent in the limelight and believes he still has a lot to offer at Paris Saint-Germain.

The Brazilian has been heavily linked with a move away from PSG, with a sensational return to Barcelona on the cards.

He has at times fuelled this speculation himself and some have suggested that he may well have burned some bridges in Paris – but Cavani thinks it is an experience that can help Neymar.

"I hope that everything that has happened to him will give him the experience to grow as an individual,” he told Le Parisien.

“I think he still has a lot to give PSG, until the last day he is here as a player. He has a lot to give to football as well.”

Cavani is generally the least heralded of PSG’s fearsome front three, and he may have been feeling a little left out this summer with rumours swirling around his teammate Kylian Mbappe as well.

Mbappe had suggested that he could be looking for a fresh challenge away from Paris, but recently reaffirmed his commitment to the club and apologised for his comments.

“Playing with great players like him, like Kylian, I really enjoy it,” Cavani added. “Now it’s time to find the connection between us, to create a good team, a good working atmosphere of work, sacrifice and professionalism.”

When Neymar first joined PSG in the summer of 2017, there was plenty of evidence that he and Cavani didn’t get on.

Early in the 2017-18 season, the pair fought over who would take a penalty against Lyon. Cavani had been the penalty taker the previous year, but Neymar assumed the responsibility following his world-record transfer from Barca.

Later in the season, Neymar was booed by some PSG fans after taking another penalty. 7-0 up and with the Brazilian already having a hat-trick under his belt, Cavani was only one goal from breaking the club’s all-time scoring record. Once again, Neymar took and scored the spot-kick.

"A lot of things have been said about us,” Cavani said.

“It's true that we had some differences in the first few months after his arrival, but it's good to come together and talk it over.

“After that, the social networks, the external communication... it has been exaggerated, a lot of things have been said that aren’t true.”