Neymar was jeered by Paris St-Germain fans after he denied Edinson Cavani the chance to become the club’s all-time top scorer during the Ligue 1 side’s 8-0 rout of mid-table Dijon.
Cavani’s first-half strike saw him draw level with Zlatan Ibrahimovic with 156 goals in all competitions for PSG, and the hosts were leading strongly by 4-0 at half-time.
However, although Neymar had already completed a hat-trick before PSG were awarded a penalty, the Brazilian decided to take the spot-kick instead of allowing Cavani to take it, resulting in seemingly humorous jeers and chants for Cavani from the home crowd.
After the game, Neymar, shaking his head, palmed off his man of the match award to a PSG staff member as he walked hurriedly back to the dressing room at Parc des Princes, having not stopped for waiting television reporters.
This also follows an incident earlier this season in which the pair had argued over a penalty, with Cavani refusing to let Neymar take it and then missing, although coach Unai Emery defended Neymar after the match this time.
“I think Neymar took the penalty because it was also a good day for him,” Emery said. “We’re happy with it. But there will be lots more chances for Cavani to score more goals.”
On the other hand, PSG defender Thomas Meunier described it as “a bit of a shame and a bit ungrateful” but acknowledged that Neymar was his side’s penalty taker.
“He could have given him the ball, it would have been a nice gesture of fair play,” he said. “He did so much for the team today and the fact that the fans are whistling at him, well he didn’t take it very well. I think most players would have had the same reaction.”
PSG lead the table by 11 points from nearest rivals Lyon after 21 games — who they play on Sunday after having won their past eight league and cup games, scoring 31 goals and conceding just six.