According to noted football journalist Guillem Balague, Barcelona are trying to ensure that Brazilian star Neymar lands in the club by summer. The club has reportedly signed an agreement worth €10m with Neymar; other clubs also have been monitoring the situation.
Former Brazilian and Real Madrid striker Ronaldo is said to have persuaded the striker to join Real, but the deal is said to have been made, and Manchester City and Chelsea have also received the same response.
But the Catalan club is looking for Neymar to join the club a year earlier than expected and also 12 months before the start of the World Cup. However, the player seems to be unsure about his plan, and is yet to confirm his decision. With David Villa having only one year remaining on his contract, the arrival of Neymar has become a priority.
Neymar earns a net €15m a year at Santos, the club he has played for all of his life, and so he doesn’t look very keen on a change of environment. He has been pursued by various European sides but it remains to be seen whether he could make the big deal.
Barcelona has a firm agreement with both the player and with Santos for 2014, but the timing of his arrival could vary if they can successfully persuade both parties.
In addition to the 40 million transfer fee, the Catalan club will finance an Academy of the Brazilian club with talk of an investment of some 20 million euros in their club’s youth scheme.