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Neymar Slammed After Dropping Retirement Hint

After recently causing a stir by hinting at a shock early retirement, Brazil and Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar has been lambasted for his comments.

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This past weekend, the 29-year-old said in an interview that the 2022 FIFA World Cup could be his last for the Selecao as he does not know if he has the mental strength "to deal with football anymore".

While his remarks have been largely interpreted as the former Barcelona attacker suggesting he will retire from international football next year, ex-PSG player Jerome Rothen, like a few others, seemed to see it differently.

Rothen's understanding of Neymar's comments seem to be that the player was suggesting he could be done with football altogether.

"It's a terrible statement for PSG. Neymar is a fabulous player when he is in good form," he told RMC Sport.

"The problem is that he's in a bad phase. He lacks spirit and enthusiasm. If you read between the lines, he doesn't care about PSG. He has love for Brazil, to try and win a World Cup, his last chance will be in Qatar in a year.

"But I want to remind him of his duties. When you are a player in that category, when you are the emblematic figure of a club for more than four years, where you have extended for five years and when you have decided to give the end of your career to PSG, you cannot make that declaration.

"Of course, the private life of any player can be complicated. When he talks like that, it looks like he's having a little depression. But when your name is Neymar, with the image you send out, you can't go public like that.

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"If you are dealing with your problems in private, there is no issue. We all agree that, just because Neymar is one of the greatest players in the world, doesn't mean he can't have feelings, but you have to keep them to yourself.

"When he speaks, and it is not often, it is almost always denigration of PSG. Leonardo (PSG sporting director) responds to the president of Real Madrid, to (Kylian) Mbappe's family but he never says anything about Neymar.

"Usually, your flagship player should be exemplary on every level, I hope they don't give him his ethics bonus with statements like that.

"For me, it's an abuse. He'll have to face up to his responsibilities soon."

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