The dust has settled on penalty-gate, and Neymar and Edinson Cavani have been forced to kiss and make up – in public, at least – as the two narcissists pretend they’ve got a working relationship – it’s very much that office dynamic where you have the efficient colleague – who will get the job done quickly – and then you have that co-worker who, may well take ten times longer to do a job, but the likelihood is, they’ll do it a lot better (no prizes for guessing which one is Neymar).
Edinson Cavani on rumoured unrest with Neymar: "Everything has a solution & is quiet. The important thing's we all fight for the same goal." pic.twitter.com/qzmERGRgBc
— Squawka News (@SquawkaNews) October 3, 2017
Neymar moved to escape the shadow of Lionel Messi, whilst Edinson Cavani was quickly becoming accustomed to filling the power vacuum that was left by Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s exit for the Parc des Princes, 18 months ago – and the Uruguayan wasn’t willing to relinquish his hold.
As Real Madrid regularly find out, there’s only so many self-serving and self-important players you can have in one team – Cristiano Ronaldo is still believed to carry some angst towards the man who usurped him as the world’s most expensive player, Gareth Bale – and whilst building a team that would be the dream of FIFA Ultimate Team players, eventually the bubble bursts.
For this project of gluttony and greed to succeed in the French capital, something will have to give between the South American counterparts. However, with neither big enough to play second fiddle, who, tactically, is the best to lead the charge?
Reporter: What would you do if a player did not give you the penalty like Cavani and Neymar?
Zlatan: I will make the penalty area his grave. pic.twitter.com/QIOVNqnoru
— Footy Accumulators (@FootyAccums) October 4, 2017
Looking at what Paris Saint-Germain’s Qatari owners are looking to build, then Neymar would represent the perfect embodiment of it; exciting, swashbuckling football, with the addition of out of the ordinary moments of magic.
And from six Ligue 1 games, with a total of 240 forward passes, six goals and five assists, and a few viral social media videos, the Brazilian is, on paper, delivering.
But what about if those moments of amazement are unnecessary? After all, 40% of Neymar’s audacious outside of the box efforts have failed to hit the target. Isn’t being a world-class footballer about knowing when and where is the right time to go on a mazy run? Or whether it would make more footballing sense to bring Thiago Motta into play in the middle of the park?
Neymar is a lot of fart and no poo. And this isn’t to suggest Cavani is the shining light of Paris – an abysmal and selfish 124 passes in a total of 666 minutes of Ligue 1 football, this season, showcases that – there’s definitely a joke to be made about the devil, there, but that’s probably best left to the WhatsApp chat between Neymar and Dani Alves.
Whilst the world debates the merits of Cavani versus Neymar, and whilst the former Barcelona man throws a tantrum at the former Napoli striker stealing his thunder, it’s almost forgotten that Kylian Mbappe now resides in the French capital.
Mbappe: Show me your number
— Wax Ngcobo (@KreateKontent) September 27, 2017
That’s who PSG should be building around, that’s who is the future of this Paris side and that is a footballer who has a rare thing for a world-class striker: a selfless footballing brain.
Step aside, Edinson. And step aside, Neymar; King Kylian is ready.