Neymar's father has spoken in defence of the Paris Saint-Germain attacker against his reputation as a persistent diver.
And Neymar Sr. says he encourages his son to pull out of some challenges to prevent himself getting injured, but has denied suggestions he wants him to con referees.
"I told him: 'Oh, Neymar, if you play, you play'," he told UOL. "I particularly think Neymar should not get into duels at certain
"When I explain this, they say: 'So you asked Neymar to dive? So you're responsible for him diving?' No, I'm not responsible for him diving. I am responsible for protecting him.
“I don’t think Neymar is spoiled on the pitch. I don’t see anybody protecting him on the field. What does it mean to be overprotected in sports? Is Neymar an overprotected player? No. Neymar is
He added: "One piece of advice I give my son is that he does not lose the joy of playing football. Let him keep playing however he thinks is right regardless of the outcome. Of
The player's father also took a swipe at the press, which he says tends to tell lies about Neymar.
"The press is responsible for a lot that
Neymar has been out of action since January with a foot injury and is expected to return next month.
The former Barcelona forward has played 20 games in all competitions for PSG this season and has scored 20 times, setting up a further 11.