Neymar storms fashion week – Ligue 1 goes social

Neymar is the hottest name in France at the moment, so it was only natural that he was one of the biggest movers and shakers at Paris Fashion Week, which has been ongoing for women’s clothing in recent days.

The Brazilian is the face that everyone wants to be associated with their brand and as such has been highly visible away from the field.


???? #pfw2017

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While he has clearly been enjoying himself socially – his father told Canal+ on Sunday that the player “loves everything about Paris” – he has continued to excel on the field.

His Paris Saint-Germain side produced arguably their two best performances of their season as they brushed aside Bayern Munich 3-0 in the Champions League then obliterated Bordeaux 6-2 at the weekend.

Following the win over the Germans, he posted a picture of himself celebrating a goal with Fashion Week buddy Dani Alves and commented: “Focus, Strength and Faith .. that’s what keeps you alive.”


Foco, Força e Fé .. isso é que te mantém vivo ?? Focus, Strength and Faith .. that’s what keeps you alive ??

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“Great victory today, congratulations team! Thanks for the hug “golden boy” @k.mbappe29,” Neymar posted after the latter success on Saturday.


Grande vitória hoje, parabéns equipe ! Obrigado pelo abraço “menino de ouro” @k.mbappe29 ??? Great victory today, congratulations team! Thanks for the hug “golden boy” @k.mbappe29 ???

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‘The Golden Boy’ has, of course, become another instant favourite at Parc des Princes.

Born in Paris, he has taken to playing for Unai Emery’s side like a natural and, of course, is another great media draw. He might not yet command quite the same attention as Neymar, but he showed he can command a bit of swagger when it comes to the catwalk, too.


It’s Time ???

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The 18-year-old was also on the scoresheet in the thumping success over Bordeaux and offered a message of solidarity to France team-mate Benjamin Mendy, who had a serious knee ligament injury confirmed this week.

After finding the net against Bordeaux, he held up two fingers from each hand, which was a nod to the Manchester City player’s squad number.


Victoire 6-2 contre Bordeaux ??. Force BM22 ???? @benmendy23

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“6-2 win over Bordeaux. Be strong BM22,” he wrote.

While it was a good week all-round for PSG, it was a mixed week for Mario Balotelli, whose Nice side continued to make waves in the Europa League by beating Vitesse at home but who crashed to a 4-2 home loss to Marseille in Ligue 1.


@ogcnice ??? #issanissa #relax??

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The Italian, who said that he needs a coach who “breaks his balls” to get the best from him this week, was on target after only four minutes in the derby against OM, but his side eventually slumped to defeat.

Patrice Evra, who had started Marseille’s midweek defeat at the hands of RB Salzburg, did not, however, feature in that game as he continues to face an uphill battle for a starting spot, with Jordan Amavi preferred to him. However, the upbeat veteran was delighted with the impact he has made on social media, having hit the milestone of 3 million followers.


MASSIVE THANK ??????It’s been only 1year 4months I have been on Instagram… i have already spread all around the #world ?my I LOVE THIS GAME! Moto. ?We reached 3 million #followers together #sharing #love and #happiness and being #funny #smile and #crazy sometimes, ?????but we still need to #spread the #message Unfortunately in my country there a few spreading negativity instead of positivity but I’ve got #hope and #faith that together we can make everyone love this game! No grumpiness allowed. If you want to be grumpy please don’t use my Instagram to spread your negativity???always love this game!!!???#ilovethisgame #goodvibes #positivevibes #motivation #beapanda

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Evra still wants more from his social media account, while the Marseille will be hoping he can show more on the field.


Balotelli admits he needs managers to ‘break his balls’

Mario Balotelli says managers need to “break his balls” in order to bring the best out of his enigmatic talent.

The Italian striker, who is currently with Ligue 1 side Nice having previously represented Inter, Manchester City, Milan and Liverpool, has posed plenty of questions to his many bosses down the years.

Nice 17/2 to beat Marseille 1-0

Some have been able to eke talismanic efforts out of him, with his form returning during an impressive debut campaign in France last season.

The 27-year-old is clearly a fan of Lucien Favre’s methods, with it important for him to feel “angry” if he is to produce the performance levels expected of him.

Balotelli told Nice’s official matchday programme ahead of a meeting with Marseille when asked how he would look to handle a player such as himself: “I would try to limit my compliments. Instead, try to break his balls, because I know when all seems calm, it’s a problem.

“When someone treads on my toes, then I get angry and I do more. It’s important to learn from your mistakes.”

After netting 17 times in all competitions last season – his best return for three years – Balotelli saw a short-term contract come to an end.

Various clubs were reported to have expressed an interest in taking him on, but he eventually committed to another one-year deal with Nice and has gone on to net six times in eight appearances this term.

“I stayed because I feel happy here, it’s that simple,” added Balotelli.

“I am happy with my teammates, the supporters, the coach. When I signed the first time, I didn’t know how I’d feel here. It was a surprise, but I’m happy. Plus it’s a good project.

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“This summer, we all had the objective of the Champions League in our minds and we wanted to go for it, or at least qualify for the Europa League.”

Nice failed to make the group stage of the Champions League, but have collected back-to-back victories in their two Europa League games to date.

They have also recovered from a slow opening to their Ligue 1 campaign to collect seven points from their last three fixtures.


Dani Alves rescues lost dog & Evra befriends a camel – animal-loving Ligue 1 goes social

Rather than events on the football field, the social media post that has caught the attention most in France this week came from Dani Alves.

The Brazil star might have been left out of the starting XI of Paris Saint-Germain’s forgettable 0-0 draw with Montpellier on Saturday, but he still managed to hit the headlines domestically when he took to Instagram to make an appeal for a lost dog.

“I lost my beautiful doggie around Malmaison Forest (Paris)… her name is Mari… please let me know if you find her. She is my life,” the former Barcelona and Juventus full-back posted.


#Repost @joanasanz (@get_repost) ??? I lost my beautiful doggie ???? around Malmaison Forest (Paris)… her name is Mari… please let me know if you find her ?? she is my life ?

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Many publications instantly jumped to the conclusion that Alves had lost his dog, but they missed the fact he had advertised that he was posting on behalf of Brazilian model Joana Sanz.

Thankfully, the story had a happy ending as Mari was returned to her owner, who posted a video of herself reunited with her pet, albeit three days later.


I can’t believe that my beautiful mouse is here with me ?thank you so much @emmaben77 for your help in France, I had never met someone like you at work… you are super nice and incredible person ?? muchas gracias @sulidominguez por contactar con todas las paginas de animales perdidos en Francia…. nunca me habría esperado una ayuda tan perseverante de una persona que casi no veo, te quedas grabada en mi ? and thanks a lot to all people worried for me? #mariathome #blessed

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There was more good news for Dani Alves earlier in the week, as he was nominated for the FIFPro World 11 along with club and international team-mate Neymar. If the striker was quiet over the award, the full-back offered his reaction on social media.

“When you despise his strength, is when a warrior differs from the rest, no matter how old he is, no matter where you are, no matter who you are, never stop being what brought you here … never stop fighting, never stop respecting what you do, never stop fighting for what you want, but above all, never abdicate your values, they will keep you competitive and winning until you decide to put an end to your story and inspire other little dreamers like you … … when this is not enough, try to overcome yourself every day and every year. WHAT A YEAR,” he posted.


Um guerreiro quando menosprezam sua força é quando se difere do resto, não importa quantos anos tenha, não importa onde você estiver, não importa com quem estiver, nunca deixe de ser o que te trouxe até aqui… nunca deixe de lutar, nunca deixe de respeitar o que faz, nunca deixe de brigar pelo o que quer mas sobre tudo, jamais abdique do seus valores, eles te manterão competidor e ganhador até que você decida colocar final nessa grande história e inspirar outros pequenos sonhadores como você…… enquanto isso não chega, tente superar-se cada dia e cada ano. “QUE ANO VIVIDO” #Deusnocomandosempre?? #likebenjaminbutton? #goodcrazryhardhard??

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Neymar, meanwhile, was busy nursing a bruised big toe on his right foot, which kept him out of the weekend’s match with Montpellier. He will be back for Bayern Munich on Wednesday, and he took time to congratulate captain Thiago Silva on his birthday.

“Congratulations to my capitain @thiagosilva_33, who, besides being one of the greatest defenders I have seen, is my friend … I celebrate not only your day but your friendship, brother. I wish you all the best in your life !! I love you,” the world’s most expensive player said.


Parabéns ao meu capita @thiagosilva_33 que além de amigo é um dos maiores zagueiros que vi … eu celebro não só teu dia e sim tua amizade também irmão. Desejo tudo de melhor na sua vida !! Tamo junto, te amo ????

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Meanwhile, in what was otherwise a quiet week for him, he name dropped another famous sporting friend, this time Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton.


My bro ?? #Repost @lewishamilton ??? It’s Lit?? #LFW

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He is not the only one with a famous friend, though. Nice striker Mario Balotelli has caught up with Marco Materazzi, his former team-mate at Inter.

The centre-back, though, is perhaps most famous for his role in the 2006 World Cup final, when he provoked the great Zinedine Zidane to breaking point and caused the France star to aim a headbutt at him. “It’s always great to see you, brother,” the striker commented.


TUTTI PAZZI PER MATERAZZI!! Sempre bello rivederti fratellone ???? #goodnight?

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Balotelli has been in good form for Nice and was on target as they came from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Angers on Friday evening.

Before the game, Mario urged his team to “focus”, and while they struggled to do that, they did eventually get over the line.


TUTTI PAZZI PER MATERAZZI!! Sempre bello rivederti fratellone ???? #goodnight?

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Meanwhile, Patrice Evra’s rough spell of form continued, to such an extent that he was left out of the Marseille squad that recorded a much-needed victory over Toulouse in the Sunday night fixture.

He had to be content with posting videos from his summer holidays, including this unusual conversation with a camel.


Talking to a camel ? now ???I love this game haahahahah #ilovethisgame #love #camel #desertlife #goodvibes #positivevibes #smile

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Patrice, unfortunately, may not be loving the game just quite as much as he usually does.


‘Neymar shouldn’t even have to ask!’ – Balotelli takes Brazilian’s side in Cavani penalty drama

Mario Balotelli has defended “crack” Neymar for trying to impose himself on set pieces at new club Paris Saint-Germain.

During Sunday’s win over Lyon, the €222 million summer signing and Edinson Cavani argued over set pieces, with both rowing over the penalty that the Uruguay striker subsequently failed to score.

PSG 10/11 to beat Bayern

Cavani also tussled with Dani Alves over the ball for a free kick and,  although the full-back said he wanted to take it himself, he gave the ball to Neymar.

Cavani insists he has no problem with Neymar , while coach Unai Emery has  told the players to sort penalties out together , but the argument has attracted a lot of attention beyond the team. 

And Balotelli has taken to social media to share his view on the debate, although his exact stance wasn’t immediately clear.

The Nice striker took a picture of the front page of French newspaper  L’Equipe  which featured the two stars and had typed over it: “[Neymar], you shouldn’t even ask [to] shoot them.”

Balotelli Instagram

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The Italian could have been hitting out at the Brazilian and telling him that he should just let Cavani take free kicks and penalties.

However, a subsequent post on Instagram Stories in which he called him a “crack” – aka, a top player – with a gold medal emoji suggested he thinks Neymar deserves to be the designated set piece taker and shouldn’t have to ask for the privilege.

Away from the drama at Parc des Princes, former Man City and Liverpool striker Balotelli had a great weekend, scoring an emphatic winner in Nice’s 1-0 victory over Rennes.


Philanthropist Neymar and philosopher Dani Alves – Ligue 1 goes social

The return of autumn and the Champions League marks the coming of a stage in the football season when the games arrive thick and fast at the top level. All of the big clubs have played three times over the last week, and as such their stars have had little opportunity to think of anything but football.

For Paris Saint-Germain, it was once again a highly-successful week. Not only did they start their Champions League campaign with a thumping 5-0 win over Celtic in Scotland, a result celebrated by many of their stars on Instagram, they also increased their grip on Ligue 1 by seeing off Lyon 2-0 at home. “Great work from the team, this is the way forward,” Dani Alves posted to his Instagram account following the victory over Brendan Rodgers’ side in Glasgow.


Grande trabalho equipe, esse é o caminho a seguir!! #GoodCrazyishere

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Sunday’s encounter with Lyon was Kylian Mbappe’s first home match as a PSG player and was decided by two own goals, the second of which arrived after the young striker’s shot cannoned back off OL goalkeeper Anthony Lopes, onto team-mate Jeremy Morel and into the net.

It was cruel on a Lyon side that deserved a share of the spoils for a dogged performance. The nature of the two goals did not stop Mbappe from enjoying his evening, though, as he posted a picture of the game to his Instagram account after the match.


Victoire 2-0 contre Lyon

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Meanwhile, Neymar was again a chief protagonist for his side, although he had a hard match against Lyon full-back Kenny Tete. Indeed, for once the Brazilian was prevented from either scoring or being credited with an assist.

He was, however, on target in PSG’s win over Celtic, blasting his team into the lead with a fierce finish in the first half. For Neymar, it has been customary to post himself a good luck message to social media before his matches, and he has done so twice over the last week. “May God bless and protect us,” both read.


Que Deus nos abençoe e nos proteja

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The striker has been doing his bit for charity, too. He took to Instagram to raise awareness of an organisation called Handicap International France, who seek to act to protect vulnerable people.

Neymar became an ambassador for the organisation earlier this week and posted a simple picture of himself with the word ‘Hi’ written on the palm of his hand.


@hi_france @institutoneymarjr

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#StopBombingCivilians @hi_france @institutoneymarjr

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In another post, he offered a similar picture, albeit one with ‘STOP’ written on his hand. This is a message that is designed to raise awareness of civilians in war-torn areas being the target of bombs.

PSG team-mate Dani Alves has been in a philosophical mood, as usual. “If you make your base strong, your structure will never shake with turbulence, its principles will be what strengthens your consciousness, will give you the ability to run and excel! If at some point you think about changing something in life, change your actions, change your attitudes and they will be reflected in those around you. Take care of your emotions, they bring love for life and peace for the hearts,” he posted.


Dependendo da sua base, sua estrutura nunca se abalará com turbulência, os seus princípios serão o que fortalecerá sua consciência, te dará a capacidade de execução e competência! Se em algum momento pensar em mudar algo na vida, muda a suas ações, mude suas atitudes e elas se verão refletidas nos que te rodeiam. Cuide das suas emoções, elas que trazem amor pela vida e paz para os corações. #BomFinalDeSemanaMeuPovo #GoodCrazyPower

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One of the big stories in the French media this week has been the decision to award the 2024 Olympic games to Paris. It was a decision met with joy from many involved in sport in the country, with Mbappe among those to post about the vote on social media.


After his face was portrayed in lights around the city just a couple of weeks ago, he gave coverage to the altogether different event.


Hâte d’y être #PARIS2024

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“Can’t wait for it,” he said, perhaps with one eye on tackling club-mate Neymar in the competition, after Brazil famously won the title for the first time in Rio 2016. Mario Balotelli is another star who has had an excellent week.


He was on target as Nice recorded a thumping win over Zulte Waregem in the Europa League on Thursday and then scored the winner as they went to Rennes on Sunday to pinch a 1-0 success. “It’s only the beginning,” the Italy international forward promised as his fine form continued.


Alass !! Nice assist ! Allez nice.. bravo le gars It’s only the beginning ! Focus on next match guys. #issanissa

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Bravo les gars @dantebahia but And thank you supporters . Now focus on next match ! Andiamo!!

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Someone not having such a good time of it currently is Patrice Evra, who was dropped for Marseille’s victories over Konyaspor and Amiens this week. However, the veteran defender seems to be taking it all in his stride, showing his usual upbeat attitude on Facebook.



Only LOVE on my instagram!!! Where the grumpy are ??where the grumpy are ?? HAPPY #monday Send this video to all the negative people and just clean your shoulder always thanks god I’m alive God is good I love this game hahaahhahahahaha #ilovethisgame #grumpy #godisgood #love #life #happy #share #funny

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There is some welcome respite over the next week for the players, with no Ligue 1 sides in midweek action.