Neymar admits “a draw is a defeat” to Brazil after the Seleccao opened their Olympics campaign with a stalemate against South Africa on Thursday.
Neymar started Brazil’s Olympic opener in a three-pronged attack alongside Barcelona-linked Gabriel Barbosa and former Blaugrana target Gabriel Jesus, but the side were subsequently booed off as they failed to break down the 10 men of Bafana Bafana.
“We knew it wouldn’t be as easy as getting here and taking the gold,” he said after the match.
“For us, the draw is a defeat. The team played to win, but we know our responsibility. We’ll encounter more difficulties [in the tournament].
“We need to know how to overcome [adversity], but we’ll stay calm and make things right as soon as possible so we can have a good game on Sunday.
“The first match is always the hardest because of the anxiety that marks the start of a competition, and I think the anxiety ended up hurting us a little.”