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Neymar’s Fascination With Poker Gambling

Most people know the footballer as the star of Paris Saint-Germain. However, Neymar da Silva Santos Jr. is also considered to be a pretty respectable poker player. He’s even competed in WSOP events. Commonly known as Neymar, the Brazilian professional football (soccer) player has gained worldwide recognition for his exceptional skills, speed, and agility on the field. He was born on February 5, 1992, in Mogi das Cruzes, São Paulo, Brazil.

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Football – The Beginnings For Neymar

Neymar began his football journey at a young age and quickly stood out as a prodigious talent. He joined the youth academy of Santos FC, one of Brazil’s most prominent clubs, in 2003 at the age of 11. His exceptional performances in the youth ranks earned him a promotion to the senior team in 2009 at the age of 17.

In his debut season, Neymar showcased his immense potential, displaying remarkable dribbling abilities, precise passing, and an eye for goal. He helped Santos win the Campeonato Paulista (São Paulo State Championship) in 2010, scoring 14 goals in the tournament and emerging as the leading goal scorer. His performances earned him the prestigious FIFA Puskás Award for the best goal of the year in 2011.

Neymar Teaming Up With Messi At Barca

Neymar’s success at Santos attracted the attention of some of Europe’s biggest clubs. In 2013, he made a high-profile move to Barcelona. Thereby joining forces with Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez to form a formidable attacking trio known as “MSN.” Neymar played a crucial role in Barcelona’s treble-winning campaign in the 2014-2015 season. Helping the team secure the La Liga title, the Copa del Rey, and the UEFA Champions League.

After four successful seasons at Barcelona, Neymar made a record-breaking transfer to Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) in August 2017 for a fee of €222 million. Thus making him the most expensive player in history at the time. He continued to excel on the field, leading PSG to numerous domestic titles. These were including Ligue 1 championships and domestic cup victories.

Caps For Brazil


Neymar’s international career with the Brazilian national team began in 2010, when he made his senior debut at the age of 18. He has since represented Brazil in several major tournaments, including the FIFA World Cup and the Copa America. Neymar has been an integral part of the national team’s success, helping them win the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup and playing a key role in their run to the final of the 2021 Copa America.

Throughout his career, Neymar has been recognized with numerous individual awards and accolades. He has won the South American Footballer of the Year title multiple times. Furthermore, he has been named to the FIFA FIFPro World XI on several occasions. Neymar’s performances on the pitch have made him one of the most marketable athletes in the world. Thanks to this, he is a brand ambassador for several major companies.

Neymar Has Some Pretty Shifty On-pitch Behaviour

While Neymar’s career has been marked by incredible achievements and skilful displays, he has also faced criticism for diving and perceived theatrics on the field. Nonetheless, he remains a highly influential and celebrated figure in the world of football. He’s popular for his immense talent and ability to entertain fans with his electrifying style of play.

A Developing Love Of Poker

In addition to football, Neymar’s greatest affection lies with the game of poker. During the 2014 World Cup hosted in his home country, he first dipped his toes into the world of casino games, drawn to its competitive nature, reminiscent of the intensity he experiences on the pitch. Known for his aggressive playing style, Neymar has made a name for himself in various poker circuits. Even in online casino poker, he maintains the same approach. In 2015, the paparazzi spotted him in Barcelona participating in the EPT Poker Championships.

Although he initially aimed to keep a low profile, by 2018, after Brazil’s loss to Belgium in the World Cup, Neymar confidently attended the Brazilian Series of Poker, embodying the demeanour of a high roller. Despite facing stiff competition from an initial field of 300 semi-professional and professional players, he impressively secured a sixth-place finish, earning a prize of 80,000 Brazilian Reals.

WSOP Off Limits For Neymar


In the 2020 Spring Championship of Online Poker (SCOOP), Neymar demonstrated his skills once again, achieving a highly respectable 12th place with total winnings of $6,719. Two years later, he ventured into Event #26: $10,000 Limit Hold’em Championship, aiming to compete in the prestigious WSOP gold bracelet event. However, out of a field of 92 players, Neymar fell short of reaching the second day of competition.

Poker Tattoos

Neymar’s passion for poker is evident through his poker tattoo adorning his right calf. While he primarily enjoys playing Texas Hold’em, he occasionally indulges in Omaha and 7 Card Stud. By the way, all of these variations and many more can be found online at 22Bet Casino. His preferred hands are a pair of Tens and Jack Five, showcasing his dedication to the game. Neymar approaches poker with a serious mindset, drawing parallels between the strategies employed in football and the card game. During his time with Barcelona, he frequently engaged in poker, and the tradition continues with regular games at PSG.

Neymar prides himself on being unpredictable to his opponents, although he admits to occasionally playing too many hands. Such is his love for the game that he named his pet dog ‘Poker’ when he first acquired it. Regardless of the setting, if playing at an Internet casino, Neymar’s goal remains consistent: to win the jackpot online.

Partnerships For Neymar

In 2015, Neymar became the esteemed “Brand Ambassador” for PokerStars, the world’s largest online poker card room. Funnily enough Christiano Ronaldo has the same job. One of his most memorable jackpot poker victories at that time was scoring a Royal Flush, which granted him a pot of €17,810—an extraordinary feat with odds of 1 in 2,598,960. However, his collaboration with PokerStars faced challenges when the UK Gambling Commission imposed a ban on using his image to promote the company. The commission’s policy prohibits the use of individuals who are or appear to be under 25 years old in gambling promotions. Neymar, being only 23 years old at the time, fell within this restriction. Consequently, all UK-based affiliate websites were obliged to remove his likeness from their promotional materials.

Global Ambassador Of Blaze

In December 2022, a four-year agreement was reached between Neymar and Blaze, a casino licensed in Curacao. Neymar, the renowned football player, became their official “Global Ambassador,” utilizing his massive following of millions on social media platforms such as Instagram and Twitter. Neymar engages his followers by live-streaming poker games on Twitch, effectively attracting them to the poker table. He filled his time there by demonstrating all sorts of poker jackpot winning tips and tricks. Blaze is extremely happy with this partnership. It enhances its visibility across Latin America. Thus leveraging Neymar’s extraordinary reach of 201 million Instagram and 61 million Twitter followers.

Is Neymar Promoting Gambling To Young Fans?


However, critics of the gaming industry expressed their displeasure with Neymar promoting gambling to his young and impressionable fan base. It is apparent that this collaboration is driven by commercial interests, as Blaze would not have joined forces with the globally acclaimed football star if it did not promise to bring in new customers to their establishment.

A Foolish Act In France

The spotlight recently fell on Streaming Gambling Sessions during a Twitch live stream. Neymar, visibly emotional, appeared to be in tears after losing €1 million on Blaze within an hour. This livestream, aired online in France. This is a country with strict regulations on online gambling promotion. As a result, it has prompted an investigation by the Autoridade Nacional de Jogos (ANJ) into Neymar’s potential encouragement of young people to gamble. However, it has since come out that the entire event was merely a publicity stunt. In other words, with no real money at stake.

A Better Argument For Neymar

On the other hand, one can argue that Neymar is an adult capable of making his own decisions. Similar to casino players worldwide, including those at reputable online casinos like 22Bet Casino, Neymar has not engaged in any illegal activities. It is worth noting that Blaze is not an anonymous offshore casino. They hold a valid license and implement thorough know-your-customer (KYC) controls to prevent underage gambling.

A Career In Poker After Football

Despite the profitability of associating with Twitch, there is a chance that live-streaming of gambling on the platform could stop sooner rather than later. This is because Amazon, the owner of the streaming platform, banned the unregulated cryptocurrency offshore casino Stake in October of the previous year. Looking ahead, Neymar envisions a full-time professional career in jackpot games of professional poker once he hangs up his boots. He expressed, “It’s true that I plan to turn pro. I feel very comfortable playing poker and believe I can participate in major tournaments after my football career concludes.”

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