Paris Saint-Germain sporting director Leonardo has explained why the French champions rejected Barcelona’s first offer for Neymar.
The Brazilian forward has been linked with a move away from PSG all summer, and a return to Barcelona appears to be the likeliest destination.
Will Neymar return to Barcelona? Five things to know…
- Neymar left Barcelona for PSG in 2017 for a world record fee of £200m.
- The Brazilian has played 58 times for PSG since, scoring 51 goals and recording 27 assists.
- But Neymar has been linked with a move away from PSG and a potential return to Barca.
- According to reports Barcelona made an offer of cash plus three players.
- But sporting director Leonardo insists the conditions of the deal did not suit PSG.
According to reports, the Blaugrana tabled an offer for cash plus players, with Jean-Clair Todibo, Ivan Rakitic and Ousmane Dembele included – the latter only on a loan move.
But it appears the deal was not good enough for PSG, with Leonardo explaining why they refused.
“Our position on a potential departure of Neymar is clear, everyone knows what we want,” he told reporters.
“We got a first written offer on 27 August and we refused it, the conditions didn’t suit us.
“There are three days until the end of the transfer window, and for the moment, there is no agreement.
“We’re talking a lot, with Neymar in particular. He’s an extraordinary player, I didn’t know him personally before I came back to Paris.
“He has gone through a lot of things, he’s a football star today, and I like him a lot. We have a good relationship with him.”
With the Spanish transfer window closing on Monday evening, there is still time for a deal to be agreed so Neymar and Barcelona can reunite, ending the Brazilian’s brief chapter in Paris.
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La Liga chief urges Barcelona to sign Neymar
It appears it’s not just Barcelona fans who want the Spanish champions to re-sign Neymar. La Liga president Javier Tebas has also expressed his hopes Barcelona complete the deal, for the qualities Neymar would add to the division.
“Yes, of course [I’d like Neymar to return],” Tebas told Marca.
“With his qualities he’s in the top three players in the world. It would be very important for La Liga if he came again, although it wouldn’t be defining for the Spanish league.
“The defining thing is that we play 10 months a year, with 20 clubs each playing each other and generating passion and joy each weekend for fans in Spain and across the world.
“A player like Neymar gives you a following in countries that look out for him, but he’s not an essential element, not even Cristiano Ronaldo was. Lionel Messi, on the other hand, is an essential element because he’s the heritage of La Liga.”