BY MICHAEL PAVITT.
The Brazilian Football Federation (CFB) has reportedly begun talks with Paris Saint-Germain over the prospect of Neymar captaining the team in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic football tournament.
Neymar featured in the Brazilian team at Rio 2016 as one of the country’s three overage players for the under-23 competition.
The forward was a key player at their home Games four years ago, where the Brazilian team won men’s Olympic football gold for the first time.
Neymar converted the winning spot-kick at the Maracanã Stadium, securing a penalty shoot-out win over Germany in the final.
Rogerio Caboclo, President of the CBF, has begun talks with PSG over the French giants allowing Neymar to compete at the Games, according to Brazilian newspaper Globo.
PSG are not obliged to release Neymar for the tournament, with the event not considered an official FIFA date.
Neymar, who also won a silver medal at London 2012, has expressed his interest in competing at Tokyo 2020.
He is also expected to compete at the Copa America, which will take place in Colombia and Argentina from June 12 to July 12.
The Olympic football tournament begins just 10 days late
PSG may prove reluctant to release Neymar for the tournament, with fellow star forward Kylian Mbappé having expressed an interest in playing for France at Tokyo 2020.
Brazil will be one of two South American representatives in the Tokyo 2020 men’s football tournament, along with Argentina.
Along with Neymar, Real Madrid trio Vinicius Junior, Rodrygo and Reinier are reportedly among the players under consideration to compete at the Games.
Vinicius became the youngest player to score in El Clasico this century yesterday, netting the first goal in Real Madrid’s 2-0 win over fierce rivals Barcelona in La Liga.
Reinier was unveiled as a Real Madrid player last month, after joining from Brazilian side Flamengo.
The report also claims that new Lyon signing Bruno Guimarães has an agreement with the club allowing him to play for Brazil in the Olympics.
A total of 16 teams will compete in the men’s tournament at Tokyo 2020, including hosts Japan.
France, Germany, Romania and Spain will be the European representatives, with Egypt, Ivory Coast and South Africa the three African qualifiers.
Australia, Saudi Arabia and South Korea will represent Asia, while New Zealand are the sole Oceania team.
Two Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football nations will qualify for the Games later this month.