SAO PAULO (AP) — Striker Neymar called Paris Saint-Germain his “home” after the team’s 1-0 defeat Tuesday against Bayern Munich, which was still enough for the French club to advance to the Champions League semifinal.
The Brazilian is currently negotiating a contract extension.
“I don’t think this is even a topic anymore, I obviously feel very comfortable, at home at PSG,” Neymar told TNT Sports Brazil after the match at Parc des Princes stadium in Paris. “I feel happier than before.”
Neymar’s tone is very different from less than two years ago, when Barcelona officials were confident they would be able to bring the Brazilian back to Camp Nou.
The Brazilian forward became the most expensive player in the world when he moved from Barcelona to PSG for 222 million euros (about $250 million) in 2017. His first two seasons with the French champions were disappointing, with the star out of key matches due to injuries.
Now at age 29, the Brazilian has boosted his profile in Paris after great performances that took PSG to the last final of the Champions League, which ended in a 1-0 defeat against Bayern in Lisbon.
Neymar also talked about his raucous end-of-match celebration in front of Bayern’s Joshua Kimmich.
“I wasn’t celebrating to provoke him. I celebrated with Leo Paredes, he was in front of me,” Neymar said. “It was fate that Kimmich was also there, he said his team is better and they would go through. As if he was secured in the semifinal.”
PSG’s semifinal opponent will be known on Wednesday. Manchester City won the first leg against Borussia Dortmund 2-1.
Neymar hit the post and the bar in three clear opportunities on Tuesday, which made him promise coach Mauricio Pochettino he will be sharper in the next stage.
“I owe him a goal, regardless of the good match I played,” the Brazilian said.
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