Barcelona star praises Neymar after goal

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Barcelona midfielder Xavi believes Neymar will have been given a huge boost after he scored in his side's 1-1 draw against Atletico Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup.

The Brazilian maestro came off the substitutes' bench to level the scoring in the 66th minute.

His goal came after David Villa had opened the scoring against his former side at the Vicente Calderon.

Xavi, speaking to reporters, said of his teammates' cameo appearance: "Neymar's goal was pretty important. It will give him confidence.

"Atletico are a strong rival and they defend really well.

"We tried to do a good job both in the first and second half, but it was not easy. Towards the end we found more space.

"We tried to be patient and we managed to score a goal that will help us in the return leg."

Neymar's goal had an added importance as it meant his side scored an all-important away goal.

The second leg of the tie takes play on August 28 when Atletico travel to the Camp Nou.

Before the Atletico encounter, Neymar will be hoping to be handed his first competitive start when Barcelona travel to Malaga on Sunday.

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