Twitter erupts over teammate's reaction to Neymar 'disaster'

Andrew Reid
·5-min read
Pictured here., PSG teammates Kylian Mbappe and Neymar.
Kylian Mbappe looked stunned by Neymar's third minute shocker. Pic: Optus Sport/Getty

At his best Neymar is nigh on unplayable, but at his worst the Brazilian is a cause of frustration for so many football fans.

As it was, viewers were treated to both sides of the mercurial forward in Paris Saint-Germain's dramatic come-from-behind victory against Atlanta that booked their spot in the semi-finals of the Champions League.

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After a night of frustrating misses, Neymar finally found a way to come through for the French giants, as they became the first team through to final four.

The world's most expensive player helped set up two late goals as PSG staged a stoppage-time comeback to beat Atalanta 2-1.

The Brazilian has often been criticised for failing to lead the big-spending French club to Europe's most coveted trophy, and the relief on his face after the final whistle was obvious.

The 28-year-old was guilty of wasting several goal-scoring chances and it looked to have cost PSG as Mario Pasalic's curling strike in the 27th minute gave the Italians a lead they would hang on for until the death.

But Neymar set up Marquinhos for the 90th-minute equaliser and was involved in the build-up to Eric Choupo-Moting's winner in the third minute of stoppage time.

That goal meant PSG returned to the last four of European football's elite after a 25-year absence.

Neymar dazzled throughout the contest, with his lethal dribbling ability leaving Atalanta defenders in his wake.

The same couldn't be said about the Brazilian's finishing, however, with one squandered opportunity particularly hard to watch for teammates and fans.

PSG star Kylian Mbappe's reaction from the bench said it all, with the Frenchman's hands on his head in disbelief after Neymar contrived to miss the target completely, despite being directly in front of goal and from just behind the penalty spot.

Reaction to the miss and Neymar’s rollercoaster performance was savage from fans on social media.

PSG subs come on to rescue French side

Second half substitutes helped transform PSG's fortunes - first with Kylian Mbappe's arrival with 30 minutes remaining and then Choupo-Moting 20 minutes later.

"When I came on I thought I can't lose," said Choupo-Moting, whose high, diagonal pass reached Neymar on the left flank in the 90th minute. The Brazilian's scuffed shot was turned in by Marquinhos.

Atalanta was stunned, PSG re-energised.

It was another run by Neymar that unpicked a tiring Atalanta before feeding Mbappe, who squared across for Choupo-Moting to slide the ball over the line.

Neymar is seen here celebrating PSG's win against Atalanta.
Neymar was full of emotion after PSG's come-from-behind win. Pic: Getty

"I never thought we'd be back home tomorrow," Neymar said. "At every moment, we just went for one thing: progress to the last four."

It was a painful collapse for Atalanta, ending an improbable run in a season when the team's home city of Bergamo had been among the hardest hit regions of Europe from the coronavirus.

The lack of access to the stadium could not deter Atalanta fans flying from northern Italy to the Portuguese capital, even if it was just to cheer for the fleeting moments when the team bus passed beneath them.

They will have another chance next season. A second consecutive third-place finish in Serie A gives Atalanta a return ticket the Champions League.

"At this moment, it's quite painful," said Atalanta midfielder Marten de Roon. "Tomorrow, I will be proud of our team and club but at this moment I feel disappointment."

Cameroon international Choupo-Moting came on to replace the struggling Mauro Icardi, who managed just a single off-target shot.

Mbappe was only introduced for the final half hour, but still his partnership with Neymar was influential in creating the goals that kept PSG on course for a first European Cup to add to this season's domestic trophies.

"We've already won four titles this season but the most important is this one," Choupo-Moting said.

with agencies