Thursday, January 21, 2021

Barcelona hoping to bring back Neymar in part-exchange deal

According to Sky Sports, Barcelona are hoping to bring Brazilian star Neymar back to the club in a part-exchange deal which would see Antoine Griezmann go the other way.

Neymar has been at Paris Saint-Germain since 2017 when the French outfit shelled out a world record £200m to land him in the hopes he would be the catalyst to help their quest for a Champions League title.

His spell in Paris has been largely successful with him having won the league twice, the French league cup, the French cup and two French Super Cups. Unfortunately for him, he hasn’t been able to add to his solitary Champions League medal.

Neymar has a fantastic record at Paris Saint-Germain despite his time there having been injury hit. He’s played 80 games, scoring 69 goals and assisting 39 more – a total of 108 goal involvements.

His initial reasons for leaving Barcelona were partly to do with him being consistently upstaged by Lionel Messi. However, things at PSG have started to take a similar turn with Kylian Mbappe beginning to step into the shoes of the main man in Paris.

Neymar fits better at Barcelona

His replacement at Barcelona, after a failed bid to bring Neymar back to Camp Nou in 2019, was Antoine Griezmann. The French winger arrived from Atletico Madrid last summer but has failed to make the level of impact on the pitch that Neymar had.

Neymar bagged 105 goals and nabbed 77 assists in his 186 appearances for the Spanish champions. As for Griezmann, he’s made a total of 37 appearances for Barca, nabbing 14 goals and 4 assists – which isn’t actually too bad in all fairness.

Barca reportedly value Griezmann at £88m while PSG value Neymar at £135m meaning there would still be a hefty financial aspect to any potential deal.

Barcelona are also reportedly very keen to land Inter’s Argentinian striker Lautaro Martinez, who will likely be very expensive too. With the COVID-19 crisis currently sweeping the globe and taking a financial toll on football clubs big and small, Barca think they will need to move on from Griezmann if they are to make these deals.

Currently, there’s very little to say that PSG have any interest at all in getting this deal done so, right now, there’s a lengthy negotiating process ahead. Griezmann has never played professionally in his homeland, so you’d think he’d welcome a move to the biggest club in France…

As for Martinez, it seems very unlikely that Barcelona will be able to get both of these deals done. The Argentinian is currently valued at £72m on TransferMarkt but I can see Inter asking for a fair amount more than that – meaning Barca will have to figure out their priority.

Personally, I can’t see the Neymar deal happening. I doubt Barcelona will be able to persuade PSG to swap one of their prized assets for a 29-year-old with a depreciating value – it’s bad business.

When next season gets underway, whenever that may be, I believe Griezmann will still be firmly in his place as part of the Barcelona squad and Neymar at PSG. Meanwhile, I can foresee a future wherein Barcelona lineup with Lautaro Martinez on the field alongside his Argentinian pal…

With Barcelona ace Messi having fallen out with the board last summer with regards to their failure to land Neymar, it remains to be seen where their priority is this summer. However, the fabled MSN trio are now aging and surely it’s time to look to the future – Martinez presents a very bright looking future to me.

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