Barcelona remain determined to bring Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar back to Camp Nou and will launch a renewed transfer offensive in the summer window. The Brazilian was involved in a long-running transfer saga this summer, but PSG eventually refused to budge despite Neymar’s clear desire to return to his former club.
Nevertheless, he has continued to perform superbly since his return from injury in recent weeks, and, according to sources close to the club, Barca are ready to make him their number one priority again.
This summer, they also engineered deals for Atletico Madrid forward Antoine Griezmann and Ajax midfielder Frenkie de Jong, but will be fully focused on Neymar next time around. It is understood that Barcelona hope to raise around half the likely transfer fee of €222 million (£190m/$246m) through player sales. The figure of €222m was demanded by PSG sporting director Leonardo at the end of last summer, though it remains to be seen whether this number will remain fixed.
Neymar will be a year older and with a year less on his contract, though much could depend on his form in the Champions League knockout stages. Signed as the key player in PSG’s bid to lift the European crown, he has frequently found himself unable to feature in their crunch European games. Now, in excellent form, a turnaround in fortunes could see his pricetag rise.
Neymar scored 105 goals in 186 appearances for Barca between 2013 and 2017, winning two league titles and the 2015 Champions League before joining PSG in a world-record transfer. A member of the feared ‘MSN’ attack alongside Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, Neymar has since formed a brilliant attacking trident with Kylian Mbappe and both Edinson Cavani and Mauro Icardi.
However, Messi is known to be hugely keen for Neymar to return to Barcelona as the Argentine targets a fourth Champions League crown. If the move goes through, it would likely keep Messi happy and boost Barca’s case for a renewed contract for him.
It could also have an impact on the future of Mbappe. He seems a clear target for Zinedine Zidane at Real Madrid, but PSG would be incredibly reluctant to allow their two biggest stars to leave in the same transfer window.