Neymar and Brazil were knocked out at the quarter-final stage despite entering the tournament as one of the favourites, as the talisman looked to win a trophy that Pele lifted three times during his career.
But the 26-year-old also spent much of last year’s tournament in Russia being subjected to criticism over diving, an accusation that clearly rankles with Neymar.
Though he has returned to top form for his club, Brazil’s consecutive failures at the last two World Cups have led some in the country to criticise their star player, and Pele revealed last week that he had spoken to Neymar, especially regarding the controversy over his alleged diving.
“Pelé’s criticisms? I’ve found them interesting,” Neymar responded in an interview with Canal.
“As soon as you don’t win, criticisms come. I’ve never been acting during the World Cup, I’ve just been subject to fouls.
“Today people talk a lot about that because it’s Neymar and everything is amplified. I respect Pelé’s criticisms but I don’t approve them.”
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Boss Joachim Low is convinced Germany have improved since their World Cup 2018 embarrassment.
The holders were tipped to retain their trophy pre-tournament, but finished bottom of Group F and were eliminated in the opening stage.
Low, 58, was quizzed about Die Mannschaft’s recovery at this week’s The Best FIFA Football Awards.
Watch his answer below.
It’s been two months since Kieran Trippier scored that sensational free-kick against Croatia in the World Cup semi-final and the man himself admits he still continues to watch goal regularly.
The Tottenham player put England in the driving seat early and on course of reaching their first World Cup final since 1966 when he struck in the fifth minute. But Croatia battled back to seal a 2-1 extra-time victory in Russia.
While it was a painful defeat for his team, Trippier says he has watched his goal back again around 100 times.
Watch what he said below: