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Barcelona’s Neymar hoping to play for Flamengo in the future

Barcelona forward Neymar says it would be an honour to play for Brazilian side Flamengo one day.

The comments are likely to cause controversy in Neymar’s homeland, given Rio de Janeiro-based Flamengo are considered one of his former club Santos’ rivals.

Palmeiras were recently crowned champions of the Brasileirao, with Santos and Flamengo finishing second and third respectively, tied on 71 points, nine points behinds the winners.

“If I could, I would like to play for Flamengo, it would be a great honour for me to play at the Maracana,” Neymar said at half-time of a charity match honouring Brazilian side Chapecoense, which was organised by Brazil legend Zico.

“I would be playing there [at the Maracana] all day. It’s a club I want to play for.”

Neymar spent a decade at Santos before his 2013 move to Barca, making over 200 appearances for the first team and scoring 136 goals.

However, the 24-year-old’s relationship with the Sao Paulo club has disintegrated since his move to Spain three years ago.

In 2015, Santos requested FIFA suspend Neymar for six months in relation to what they deemed was a breach of contract when he left for Barca.

Neymar is not the only Barca player to have hinted at a future move to Flamengo.

Rafinha Alcantara — whose father Mazinho, a former Brazil international, played for rivals Vasco da Gama — has also expressed his desire to move to the club at some point in his career.

“God willing, one day, I will play for Flamengo,” he is quoted as saying by Sport.

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