Paris: Brazilian professional footballer Neymar and Nike parted ways when the U.S. company started an investigation after an employee reported that the Brazil and Paris Saint-Germain forward allegedly sexually assaulted her, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal.

The news outlet, citing former and current Nike employees as well as documents, reports that the employee filed an internal complaint saying that “Neymar tried to force her to perform oral sex in his hotel room while in New York City where she was helping to coordinate events and logistics for Neymar and his entourage.”

“Neymar Jr. will vigorously defend himself against these baseless attacks in case any claim is presented, which did not happen so far,” says a statement by the player’s spokeswoman.

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The company didn’t publicly give a reason to end the endorsement deal in August 2020.

In an interview to Brazilian Sports Magazine Placar in early February, Adam Petrick, the Global Director of Brand and Marketing for Puma, the player’s new sponsor, said that Neymar’s argument to look for the German company and close the deal one month later was that he “wanted to follow Pele’s legacy and use the company’s ‘King’ football boots”.

Neymar is currently at Brazil camp in Teresopolis, 120 km outside Rio de Janeiro, preparing for the double round of South American World Cup Qualifiers in June.

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