Neymar’s agent has played down claims that the Barcelona forward could have joined Manchester United this summer after insisting they ‘weren’t even his first choice’ transfer destination.
The Red Devils were reportedly keen on signing the Brazilian from the Spanish champions with the club hoping to sign a big-name player.
Instead, Jose Mourinho opted to land Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba in a world-record deal worth £89million, leaving United’s transfer kitty out of money.
The Barca star’s agent Wagner Ribeiro has revealed that PSG – who were also understood to be interested in the Brazil international – would have been in the strongest position to sign Neymar as their president “spoke directly with him”.
“PSG were willing to pay (Neymar’s £161million release clause) and then he would have earned £33.9m a year after tax,” Ribeiro told ESPN.
“We were talking for two hours and Neymar was enthusiastic. (PSG president) Nasser Al-Khelaifi explained that there would be no tax issues at PSG and that he’d be the No. 1 in the team, which isn’t the case at Barca.
“If Ney stayed it is because he wants to be at Barcelona, he’s happy at the club and in the city. I wanted him to go to PSG, but his father preferred that he stayed.
“(If he left) it would have been for PSG, because their president spoke directly with him, something which, for example, neither (Real Madrid president) Florentino (Perez) nor Manchester United did.”