There’s just something about playing for Brazil that brings out the best in Neymar.
The Barcelona star scored his 50th international last night as the Selecao cruised to a 3-0 win over Argentina.
It’s taken Neymar just 74 games to bring up the half century, and he is destined to become Brazil’s all-time leading scorer.
There are only three players ahead of him: Romario (55), Ronaldo (62) and Pele (77).
The scary thing is that Neymar is just 24 years of age. He could score well over 100 international goals when all is said and done.
The winger’s goal was sandwiched by Philippe Coutinho’s screamer and Paulinho’s cool finish as Tite’s team recorded their fifth straight win in the World Cup qualifiers.
For one night, Neymar was Lionel Messi’s enemy but there was only one winner.
Neymar brought out the tricks
Messi’s heir apparent assisted Coutinho’s opener and then proceeded to do what he does best: put on a show.
The tricks came out once Brazil had established a lead. Neymar decided to humiliate Lucas Biglia with two lovely pieces of skill.
We’re not sure which one we prefer ourselves, whether it was the flick over Biglia or the nutmeg on the poor Lazio player, so you can judge for yourself.
Close your legs
Argentina have a fight on their hands
The result leaves Argentina with an uphill battle to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. The Albiceleste haven’t won in four qualifying matches and are sixth, needing to finish in the top four to secure an automatic spot.
Messi, who briefly retired from international football in June, is aware that Argentina can’t afford to drop any more points.
"We did not expect this result," Messi told TyC Sports, via Goal. "Up to the first goal the match was even, we were doing well.
"We have to think about Colombia now and not repeat the mistakes we have been doing. Within all of the bad, the good thing is that we depend on ourselves, but we cannot give away more points."