Valencia goalkeeper Diego Alves has defended fellow Brazilian Neymar saying that the Barcelona attacker gets unfairly persecuted by local media.
Barcelona have struggled in recent times suffering three straight defeats. Neymar has also suffered a slump in form along with Barcelona failing to score in his last five games.
Neymar has come under some staunch criticism in recent times and Alves feels that the treatment of Neymar is unfair.
"I think it is persecution, it happens with everyone, but for being Neymar, or Messi, they always create controversies," he told Globo Esporte. "They are already used to this kind of situation."
Following the conclusion of Barca's 2-1 defeat at home to Valencia on Saturday, Neymar appeared to slap Antonio Barragan on the head, with some reports claiming he threw a water bottle that struck the right-back in the tunnel.
Alves seemed happy to move on and forget it.
"Neymar was normal. I talked to him before the game, [he was] very calm, no problem," added the goalkeeper.
"I did not see what happened at the end of the game, I was giving an interview on the pitch. When it happens, everyone goes back to their home and it ends."
The Valencia shot-stopper failed to make the Copa America squad, but he is hopeful of playing in the Rio Olympics.
"I cannot speak about it, because I may not even be called. It is up to the coach to decide if I will play or not," he added.
"What I can do is train to my best and finish the season well, without injury. Last year I got to the last game, in the final 15 minutes, I had a knee injury that took me out of the Copa America.
“Now I will try to finish the season well and wait for the opportunity."
Neymar and Barcelona will be hoping to bounce back in the La Liga when they take on Deportivo on Wednesday night.Published 19 Apr 2016, 20:35 IST