Neymars output is very respectable; he was the reason why PSG made it to the final. He has had injury problems too. For me, the best footballers are those who unbalance the opposition and Neymar us one of the few who can do that just based on his approach play. Ditto Messi, ditto Ronaldinho in his prime etc For instance even Mourinho had to plan specifically for Messi and Ancelotti used to avoid speaking about him just to avoid that fear.Not really. I never rate midfielder on goals, not at all, because their roles in the team are completely different. And I do rate Zidane, Xavi, Iniesta far far higher than Lampard, Bruno etc.
For forward players though, in most case, goals are in fact always one of the top most important aspect of the game, if not the most. It’s just the same reason why we don’t rate Martial here because of his lack of end products as forward player, and same thing why we rate Greenwood during his first breakthrough season with us, and why Haaland and Mbappe are widely regarded as generational talent - it’s their ability to score lots of goals.
But sure for some case I’d judge forward players like Cantona differently, as he is more of a creator rather than goalscorer. I do rate Messi playmaking highly too, and of course I like Sancho too.
But as for Neymar, his overall output has been comparatively lacking over past 3 years, even though his skill level or overall attacking contribution (2nd assist, or involvement in attack play which leads to goals etc) are very good, still it doesn’t make the cut to justify himself as top 2 or 3 player in the world, mainly because he wasn’t anywhere near top 3-5 in his “primary role”. Last season he only has 15 goals and 7 assist, the season before he had 16 goals 10 assist. It’s just isn’t good enough for supposedly top 2-3 player in the world. I am not asking him to be one of the best in terms of output, but at least try to get a more respectable output first.
Just a question, how highly do you rate Gerd Muller say in comparison to Cruijff?