Neymar will "return to Barcelona and become the player he always was" if he leaves Paris Saint-Germain as Patrice Evra defended the Brazilian superstar.
LaLiga champions Barcelona are reportedly negotiating with PSG to bring Neymar back to Camp Nou, just two years after his world-record €222million transfer.
Neymar – who is also believed to be attracting interest from Real Madrid – is yet to feature for PSG this season, while the 27-year-old was the subject of criticism by the club's fans during the August 11 fixture against Nimes.
Former Manchester United and Juventus left-back Evra criticised the treatment of Neymar as he leapt to his defence.
"I think Neymar, there are a lot of people who don't like him," Evra said. "The problem in this world is that when you are yourself, people hate you, and when you lie, people love you.
"Neymar, I often speak with him and I wish that God would realise his plans. It's always like that, when you arrive you are the king of the world, and when you leave... Looks like Neymar murdered someone. This is not the case.
"You'll see, people miss Neymar for his genius, his way of playing. It's true that with his dribbling, he sometimes gets annoyed, but it's his football, he has to stay himself. And I assure you, people will regret him very much."
Evra added: "It's simple, a football player must feel loved. When you feel too much negativity, you leave."
"There are people, and maybe even the media, who use that, who criticise him for diving too much during the games," Evra continued. "They create all this hatred around him. But Neymar is a good guy. He gave a lot to Paris.
"And then I'll tell you, we're talking about Neymar, but when Neymar didn't play in the Champions League, Paris didn't go any further. Neymar was not there for the two semi-finals. Neymar is too important for the PSG to lose him.
"I don't know if they're going to lose him, but if they do, they'll lose a great player. And he will return to Barcelona and become the player he always was."
Neymar has scored 34 goals in 37 Ligue 1 appearances despite both his seasons at PSG being interrupted by serious foot injuries.
In total, Neymar has managed 51 goals in 58 games for PSG – who will be without the Barca target against Metz on Friday.