Can Neymar break new ground on matchday six? – UEFA Champions League – News
Paris Saint-Germain’s landmark summer signing Neymar could break new UEFA Champions League ground against Bayern München, and could complete an unusual group stage treble for the season.
Having scored in all five of his side’s Group B games to date, the Brazilian would become the first player to register on all six matchdays of a UEFA Champions League group stage campaign if he manages to find the target against Bayern. Already the highest scoring side in group stage history with 24 goals, Paris are sure to finish top of the section with a draw – and could make it with a defeat – but will be eager to become one of the modest number of teams to have taken a maximum haul of 18 points from a #UCL group stage.
Plenty have outscored Neymar in group stages past – he has hit six goals so far, while the record, set by Cristiano Ronaldo in 2015/16, is 11 – but not even Lionel Messi and Ronaldo have managed to score on every matchday. Ronaldo notably drew a blank home and away against Paris in that 2015/16 run, while Messi’s high score of ten from 2016/17 came despite missing one game (a 2-1 win at Mönchengladbach) with a groin injury.
Neymar could finish the group stage with two more landmark achievements. Joint second on six goals in this season’s group stage scorers rankings – alongside club-mate Edinson Cavani, Tottenham’s Harry Kane and Sevilla’s Wissam Ben Yedder – he could finish top of the chart if he manages to overtake Ronaldo, who has eight goals, on matchday six.
The 25-year-old could also end the year with a more esoteric accolade; after five matchdays, he is the most fouled player in the 2017/18 UEFA Champions League with 20 infringements against him (for comparison, Messi has been fouled ten times, and Ronaldo just four). Shakhtar’s Marlos, with 16 fouls against him, is the only player who has come close to receiving the same level of attention as Neymar this time out.