Neymar has issued an apology after aiming his frustration at critical Brazil fans after their disappointing Copa America exit.
The Selecao lost 1-0 to Peru on Sunday, and with their fate sealed, the Barcelona forward defended his under-fire international teammates with a post on Instagram.
However, after gauging the reaction from supporters and his friends and family back in Brazil, he has now issued an apology for what many perceived as divisive comments as opposed to helping the nation come together after some troubled times.
Following their humiliating defeat to Germany in the World Cup two years ago, Brazil were unable to bounce back in the Copa America, with the Rio Olympics now giving them an opportunity to salvage some pride.
The senior side will now move forward without Dunga after he was sacked on Tuesday, and Neymar hopes that all concerned can come together and help the Selecao move in the right direction this summer onwards after accepting his responsibilities.
“My five minutes in Brazil were enough to realize that my post/outflow on Instagram had a negative repercussion, huge around here,” he wrote. “What I’ve heard from people who met me at the airport was that I had “exceeded” myself…I admit…Yes, I overreacted.
“Apologies to all of those who felt offended, it’s the least I can do. I wrote all of that after the end of the match against Peru and got really upset with the elimination and angry with the words I had heard and read towards those athletes. After all, I’m part of that group.
“There is a small portion that also overreacts with the microphone or a pen in hands, but like I said, a small portion. I aimed at a dozen and hit thousands, millions.
“I’ve just read an article by Renato Rodrigues, from ESPN, entitled ‘Neymar exposed the ‘us against them,’ which is not good for anybody in Brazilian football.’
“I agree with him. This argument is not good for anybody in our sport and without intention I fell into the trap.
“The yellow jersey is too glorious and to get back to winning we need to be together and above all respect each other and know the difficulties of one another. And on my post I lacked respect with everybody, journalists and fans.
“Now it’s time to say sorry and move on, enjoy the rest of my vacation and start preparing for the Olympics. It is our goal now.”