Nike Inc.

02/05/2018 | News release | Distributed by Public on 02/05/2018 08:01

Making an Icon: How the Mercurial Became Football's Wonder Boot

The two Ronaldos became household names in Mercurial, but they are not alone. In 2011, the Mercurial took center stage on the fleet feet of teenage Brazilian sensation Neymar. On July 27 in Santos, Brazil, against the interstellar Ronaldinho in one of the domestic league's most unforgettable contests, the frosted and spiky-haired wunderkind received the ball on the sideline. From there, he danced with it, pulling back and tapping it through and around six hapless defenders with a single one-two from his teammate as he worked his way toward the center of pitch and into the penalty area, spinning one opponent around and splitting two defenders, softly chipping the keeper while being taken down. This was what is meant when people say the 'beautiful game' - and fittingly, the goal was named the season's most gorgeous strike.

The stunning golazo put Neymar on the international map and set the stage for his budding superstardom.