Rumours are growing that Barcelona are planning to try and re-sign Paris Saint-Germain striker Neymar this summer to tick a few boxes at the club.
Neymar, 29, made a shock move to the Parc des Princes in the summer of 2017. It was felt he was untouchable at the Nou Camp but PSG forked out €222m and handed the Brazilian at five-year deal. He was signed to try and elevate the Ligue 1 against to the next level and win European silverware.
But it has not happened that way and they have yet to win the Champions League. It will not happen this season after Manchester City dismantled the Parisians to win their semi-final 4-1 on aggregate.
And Neymar has been hammered in the French press for his displays against City. According to Diario AS, he has been labelled ‘unbearable’ and ‘self-centred’.
Those words have been echoed throughout the South American’s four-year stint in the French capital. Injuries have blighted his time with PSG and the man with 103 Brazil caps has made just 67 league appearances in four years.
He has continued to find the net, with 54 league goals and 85 in all competitions. But there is a sense that the move has not been an unqualified success.
There were rumours that he fell out with players early on, particularly Edinson Cavani. And he was also fined by the club for missing training in 2019.
Neymar will fall out of contract in the summer of 2022. As such, the two parties are trying to work on a new deal. But Neymar has already made it clear that he would like to return to the Nou Camp.
Neymar move could keep Messi at Barcelona
Lionel Messi’s future at Barca is also up in the air as he will be out of contract in the off-season. The Spanish giants want to keep him but he appears to have set out his ground rules for penning a new deal.
The Argentinian wants Barca to make big-name signings that will take the club back to the summit of European football. Neymar would be one of those and president Joan Laporta seems keen on the idea.
The finances involved would be astronomical and Laporta will need to raise funds with sales to facilitate the deal. It remains to be seen if PSG would sanction a transfer back to Barcelona and much may rest on Kylian Mbappe’s future.
The World Cup winner has been tipped to leave and Neymar’s exit would leave manager Mauricio Pochettino in a quandary. He would have cash to spend but need to act fast to replace his top two attackers.