Barca ‘Offer 27m Euro
Real Make Higher Bid
Barcelona appear to be closing in on the signing of Brazilian striker Neymar. The Catalan side’s director of football, Raul Sanllehi, is currently in Sao Paulo ready to speak to Neymar’s Brazilian club side Santos over a move for the 21-year-old, who has also been linked with Barca’s arch-rivals Real Madrid as well as Premier League side Chelsea.
A meeting of the Santos management committee took place on Wednesday night to analyse the financial aspects of any sale and if the management committee gives the green light then Sanllehi will speak to the Brazilian club and Neymar’s move could be announced in the next few days.
But while reports from Spain last weekend claimed that Barca were only willing to pay 30million euro (£25million) for Neymar his release clause with Santos is put at 65million euro (£54million). The Brazilian club’s acting president Odílio Rodrigues is believed to have flown to Madrid last week to speak to Barcelona president Sandro Rosell. That followed reports that Real have also been in talks with Santos and while the latest reports from Brazil claim that Real have no officials in Brazil at present the club are believed to have offered more money than the 27million euro (£23million) that Barca have tabled.
Neymar’s agent, Wagner Ribeiro, met with the player’s father earlier this week and Ribeiro claims Neymar wants to remain with Santos until the end of his contract in 2014; however, investment company Delcir, which owns 40 percent of Neymar’s economic rights, told Barcelona radio station RAC1 this evening that “a lot of things” would have to change for the Brazilian star not to play for Barcelona next season.
“The plan is to go to Barcelona, because the contract is kept locked there,” said a source at Delcir. This is a reference to the alleged payment of a deposit of 10 million euros already made by Barcelona.
Neymar is believed to ultimately prefer a move to Barcelona but he has a busy schedule in the weeks leading up to any move to the Nou Camp this summer. He could conceivably say goodbye to to Santos supporters on Sunday against Corinthians in the second leg of the Sao Paulo state championship final. That is followed by Brazilian cup match against Joinville next Wednesday and the opening round of games in Brazil’s national championship, Serie A, on Sunday 26 May.
There is then the strong possibility he may be in the Brazil squad for their game with England in Rio at the beginning of June before the national team take part in the Confederations Cup which takes place in Brazil from 15-30 June. He could then be expected to team up with Barcelona in early July.