Alves: Neymar touched by God

Dani Alves has praised his Barcelona teammate Neymar and mused on how defeating Spain this summer has boosted Brazil’s belief ahead of the World Cup.

Neymar, who arrived at the Camp Nou this summer in a €57m deal from Santos, is seen as his country’s guiding influence heading into next year’s World Cup hosted by the South American nation.

His teammate at both club and international level as heaped praise on the 21-year-old, who this week netted for the Selecao in wins over Australia and Portugal.

“I believe that he is one of the few players that was touched by God when he was born and who said ‘You will be THE player’,” mused Alves in conversation with Eurosport this week.

“He is in a great team and the football world will be focused on him. The world will start to know him better and see what he can do.”

Alves also believes that Brazil are being taken more seriously as a candidate for next summer, having won the Confederations Cup, defeating Spain 3-0 in the final this June.

“I feel that many people would now bet on Brazil winning, but three or four months ago they would not have done.

“That is the real importance of the Confederations Cup for us.

“It is a dream to play these tournaments [like the World Cup] in front of your fans, your family and the people who really appreciate you…priceless!

“The victory over Spain this summer helped us to prove that we can be candidates to win the World Cup.

“Many people had forgotten Brazil but we have five World Cups and that is something to always consider.”

Tags 2014 World Cup Alves Brazil Confederations Cup Neymar Spain