Athletic Bilbao captain Andoni Iraola slammed Neymar’s ‘rainbow’ late in the Copa del Rey as unsportsmanlike, and Barcelona coach Luis Enrique agreed it was an unnecessary move.
Facing Unai Bustinza on the left sideline with Barca 3-1 up in the 86th minute at Camp Nou, Neymar tried the audacious flick over his head to get past the Athletic right-back.
Athletic players took strong exception to Neymar’s decision to pull out the trick move on the pitch, and Iraola – after his last match for Bilbao – said their feelings had not waned post-match.
“I don’t think it was classy and it isn’t sporting,” Iraola said.
“He has examples in his own team who he should look to, because they have lots to teach him.”
Luis Enrique said he still has to teach Neymar about Spanish football etiquette, claiming it is the Brazilian in him coming out.
“In Spain such things are not taken kindly and if I were an Athletic player I would have behaved in much the same way or even worse, but we have to understand that these things are normal in Brazil,” the Barca coach said.
“We will try to make him understand.”
Speaking after the match, Neymar was unapologetic, claiming he will never change.