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Africa Sports News of Wednesday, 18 May 2022


Why Neymar paid €160K for 2021 AFCON final ball at charity auction?

Neymar with AFCON 2022 final ball Neymar with AFCON 2022 final ball

The Brazil superstar was the highest bidder at the ceremony that was attended by teammates to help various causes in Africa

Brazil and Paris Saint Germain superstar Neymar is now the custodian of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations ball after paying €160,000 at an auction organised by teammate Idrissa Gueye in Paris.

Neymar was the highest bidder for the ball used during the February 6 final in Cameroon when Senegal beat Egypt on post-match penalties to win their maiden Afcon title.

The lavish ceremony was attended by a number of PSG players, including Kylian Mbappe, who sought to support Gueye’s quest to help children on the continent given proceeds from the auction will be used to fund HIV and cancer care for children in Africa.

There were autographed jerseys of PSG stars such as goalkeeper Kaylor Navas, midfielder Marco Verratti and Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema which also went on sale.

The ball had been an attraction given it had signatures of all Senegal players who were part of the squad that downed Egypt 4-2 on post-match penalties following a barren draw in regulation time.

It was Senegal’s first continental triumph after losing finals in 2019 and 2002 while breaking Egypt’s hearts led by Liverpool superstar Mohamed Salah.

Neymar is no stranger to supporting charitable causes. In April 2020, he was announced as the anonymous donor who gave five million Brazilian real ($950,000) to charity to fight the coronavirus.

With Brazil among the countries worst hit by the global pandemic, the PSG forward split the donation between Unicef and the benefit fund to help his country fight the virus that has so far claimed 665,000 lives in the South American nation.

He is also the chief financier of his own family's charity foundation, the Instituto Projeto Neymar Jr based in Sao Paulo which supports children from poor backgrounds.