Per the official website of the 2012 London Summer Olympic Games, the first men's soccer matches will take place on Thursday, July 26, which is one day before the Olympic Games officially begin. The soccer tournament will conclude on Saturday, August 11. 16 men's teams (one per country) will compete in the event. All but three of the players on each squad have to be under 23 years of age. The soccer contests will take place at a number of different stadiums located throughout Britain.
As ESPN notes, Brazil's soccer team is a favorite to win the gold medal. Some of the best young players in the world are members of this squad. One of them is Neymar. This article provides some information on Neymar that may be useful to anyone who plans to follow the Olympic soccer matches.
All of the information comes from ESPN Soccernet unless otherwise noted.
Full Name: Neymar da Silva Santos Junior
Height: 5 feet, 9 inches
Birthplace: Mogi das Cruzes, Sao Paulo (province), Brazil
First Name Only: Per The New York Times, it is customary for individuals in Brazil to use only one name. That is the reason that Neymar da Silva Santos Junior is simply referred to as Neymar by the media.
Twitter Name: @Njr92
Motto: The motto on Neymar's twitter page is, "Feliz, Ousado, Pai e Filho de Deus!" The phrase in English means "Happy, Bold, Father and Son of God!"
Personal Website: NeymarOficial.com
Idol: Growing up, Neymar idolized Brazilian soccer star, Robinho (per The New York Times)
Phenom: Many soccer experts think that Neymar has the potential to develop into one of the best players ever.
Children: Neymar has one child, a boy named Davi (per The New York Times).
Professional Career: Neymar was signed by Santos in 2003 and has been part of its farm system since that time. He made his debut with Santos FC in 2009 and played so well that he quickly attracted the attention of some large European teams. For instance, in 2010, Chelsea offered him a significant sum of money to join its squad. For now, Neymar has decided to remain with Santos FC.
Favorite Foods: Besides traditional dishes, Neymar likes Italian and Japanese foods (per The New York Times).
Olympics: Neymar will be making his first appearance in the Olympic Games.
The author is a freelance writer who has followed the Summer Olympic Games since 1988. He played soccer in his youth and follows the actions of the U.S. national soccer team.
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