At 28 years old, Neymar has already established himself among the pantheon of greats to don Brazil’s colours. On Tuesday, the Paris St. Germain forward took another step closer to bona fide legend status, moving past Ronaldo to become the second-highest all-time scorer among his countrymen.
Suiting up for his 103rd appearance with the senior national side — a 2022 World Cup qualifier against Peru — Neymar tallied a hat trick to spur Brazil to a 4-2 win — tallying in the 28th minute to tie the match at 1-1, again in the 83rd minute to give Brazil a 3-2 lead and finally a third in extra time to seal the victory.
In doing so, he earned his 62nd, 63rd and 64th career international goals, surpassing one of the nation’s most renowned talents, Ronaldo, who previously sat second all-time among Brazilian scorers with 62.
Neymar now trails only Pele, whose 77 international goals remain the gold standard for Brazil.
The hat trick ranked as Neymar’s fourth for Brazil.
Neymar’s hat-trick sends him 2nd on Brazil’s all-time top scorers. The 28-year-old celebrates by doing a number 9 with his hands & imitating Ronaldo’s trademark finger-wagging celebration in a fitting tribute to Fenômeno ™️ pic.twitter.com/D9DDgiTnAB
— FIFA.com (@FIFAcom) October 14, 2020
The former Barca and Santos forward has started three games for PSG this season, and has tallied twice already for the club.
He managed 13 goals through 15 appearances for the French side in 2019-20 as PSG was named champion following the season being cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic.