Neymar says he wants to stay in Brazil for now

BY foxsports • March 31, 2011

Brazil striker Neymar says he is happy in Brazil and has no intention of leaving the country to play abroad.

Neymar said in an interview with Bandeirantes TV on Thursday that he doesn't know what the future holds for him, but at the moment his desire was to keep playing for Santos in Brazil, near his family and friends.

''Happiness is everything, so when you are happy there is no reason to change anything,'' Neymar said. ''This is my country, my family is here, I have no intention of leaving.''

The 19-year-old Neymar is one of the most talked-about youngsters in Brazilian football and several European clubs reportedly have been trying to sign him. Last year, he rejected a multimillion euro (dollar) offer from Chelsea.

Interest only grew after he scored both goals in Brazil's 2-0 win over Scotland in London last Sunday. He acknowledged that after the match he had dinner with a Chelsea representative, but said transfer talks never came up and said the dinner took place only because his agent was a friend of the Chelsea representative.

''I don't know if I'll play abroad,'' he said. ''But right now I have a contract with Santos (until 2015) and I want to stay.''

Neymar said he was proud to have his name linked to teams such as Chelsea and Barcelona, and doesn't deny that eventually he would like playing for such great teams.

The striker complained he was racially taunted by Scotland supporters when a banana was thrown near him at the Brazil match, but he later downplayed the issue and said it's already in the past.

Officials dismissed the allegations of racist taunts, saying that a German tourist in the Brazilian fan section threw the banana. London police said they received no official reports of racism, and the Scottish Football Association on Thursday requested an apology from Neymar and Brazil.

Neymar didn't talk about the apology request and the Brazilian football federation said it would not immediately comment.

Last year, Neymar helped Santos win the traditional Sao Paulo state championship and the Brazilian Cup, along with playmaker Paulo Henrique Ganso, who is another Brazilian player being talked-about abroad. The two are expected to lead Brazil when it hosts the 2014 World Cup.

The 21-year-old Ganso, who has just recovered from a left knee injury that sidelined him for several months, reportedly is already negotiating with Inter Milan and AC Milan. Unlike Neymar, Ganso is yet to renew his contract with Santos.


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