26th June, 2019
Neymar is ready to cut his salary by 12 million euros (S$18.5m) to leave Paris Saint-Germain as part of a “verbal agreement” reached between the Brazilian and Barcelona, according to reports in the Spanish press.
PSG are yet to sanction the sale of their star striker, for whom they paid a world-record 222 million euros to sign from Barca only two years ago.
However, in an interview last week, PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi opened the door to the 27-year-old’s exit, saying, “Nobody forced him to sign here”, adding that he will no longer tolerate “celebrity behaviour” at the club.
Neymar is reportedly eager to return to Spain and Barcelona are prepared to take him back, with Spanish sports newspaper Diario Sport claiming a five-year contract has been agreed.
The publication says the terms include Neymar reducing his salary from around 36 million euros at PSG to the 24 million euros he received at Barca in 2017, while also dropping his 26-million euro court case against the Catalan club.
Neymar claims he was due the amount before leaving as a loyalty bonus, reported AFP.
Meanwhile, Barcelona-based sports daily Mundo Deportivo has reported that Neymar will also have to make a public apology to the club’s fans for the manner of his departure.
The 27-year-old spent four years at the Nou Camp, winning the Champions League and two La Liga titles as part of a brilliant attacking trident, alongside Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.
Neymar has reportedly told his former Barca teammates via text: “Relax, I’ll come.”
Fellow former Barca and Brazil star Rivaldo yesterday said his compatriot had “made a mistake” moving to Paris.
He said: “He’s a brilliant player who made a mistake in leaving Barcelona.
“I think it’s a good opportunity to come back, and if he comes back here, everything will change in his life, and he’ll have good possibilities…
“He has to take the decision now, not wait for another season.
“Leaving Barcelona was a very sudden and quick decision.
“Also, the PSG president has left the door open, if he wants to leave, for him or any other players.
“Neymar has a few things that aren’t good, but I think if he comes back, he’s not a child.
“At 27 years of age, I think he can change. It’s time to take advantage of the moment.
“He has the opportunity to be the best in the world.”
Any return for Neymar would likely require Barca to raise funds through sales.
Reports yesterday also suggested Antoine Griezmann is expected to join from Atletico Madrid for 120 million euros as early next week.
Barca have already signed Frenkie de Jong for 75 million euros from Ajax Amsterdam.