In what can only be described as an intriguing docuseries giving us an inside look into the life and career of one of the best football players, ‘Neymar: The Perfect Chaos’ details who the Brazilian really is. After all, everything from his upbringing and his ambitions to his career and his polarised public perception is examined here to showcase how Neymar Jr. tries his best to navigate it all. However, we have to admit that the one individual apart from the athlete that captivated our attention the most in this Netflix original was his father, so now, let’s find out more about him, shall we?
Who is Neymar Jr.’s Father?
Born on February 5, 1992, to Neymar Santos Senior and Nadine da Silva Santos, Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior has inherited both his father’s name and grit. The elder Santos used to be a pro football player himself in the 1980s, but it’s no secret that he couldn’t land many opportunities, leading to a rough life for the family. In fact, reports suggest that they often had to survive without electricity, a situation that only got worse once injuries started affecting his overall well-being. Neymar Sr. thus retired at the age of 32 and worked in construction, only to see his son find a passion in the same sport.
As per his accounts, Neymar Sr. was apprehensive about his son going into the industry since it never worked out for him, yet he also tried not to negatively affect Neymar Jr.’s view of the same. Hence, once he knew for sure that Jr. had not only the talent but the possibilities as well, he guided him through the steps while ensuring that every significant decision was still his son’s. In other words, Sr. became Neymar Jr.’s manager, representative, and mentor because, at that point, they had an exceptional level of trust and understanding between them.
We should mention that, throughout the years, Neymar Sr. has sometimes admittedly earned more than his son if you only look at teams and playing time. He reportedly received £8.9 million (around $11+ million now) when Neymar Jr. signed a pre-contract agreement with Barcelona in 2011, only to apparently get another £35.8 million (about $48.2 million) when his son’s transfer from Santos concluded in 2013. Moreover, as the driving force, he was set to earn £23.3 million (approx. $31 million) from Barcelona for Jr.’s extended stay in 2017, until PSG swooped in with a €222 million contract, of which he got 10%.
Where is Neymar Sr. Now?
“My father has been by my side since I was little. He takes care of things, my finances, and my family,” Neymar Jr. had stated in 2012. “There’s always somebody nearby, keeping an eye on me more than watching me.” With that said, though, as mentioned in the documentary series, things have changed in the past few years since the professional athlete has now grown up and enjoys more freedom. The fact that his relationship with Neymar Sr., albeit still very close, is primarily professional these days is also something that seemingly bothers him — the lines between father and manager got blurred.
Nevertheless, Neymar Sr. and his son remain by each other’s side even today as their goals of wanting what’s best for the latter as a footballer as well as in the future are the same. That’s why, from what we can tell, he’s still the President of NR Sports, the company the family had established in 2006 to manage a player’s career, image, and brand. He even plays a role in Instituto Projeto Neymar Jr., a social organization formed to help improve the overall standards of living and give back to their community in São Paulo. In the end, despite everything, the one thing that seems clear is that Neymar Sr. is proud of his son, along with the legacy he has created.
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