Neymar Transfer Rumours: Latest News on the Santos Star
The future of Neymar is set to be one of the biggest sports stories of the summer, with momentum gathering pace on rumours that the Santos star is set to finally make a big-money move to Europe.
Information, though, is often confused and, at times, incorrect. Thus, we will be tracking developments in the story and bringing all of the latest news from Brazil here on Bleacher Report.
Barcelona, at present, would appear to be favourites for the star's signature, but until there is anything concrete, there are a number of possible outcomes.
Just how much will Santos end up receiving for their 55 percent stake in Neymar? And where will he end up playing next season?
Last update: Sunday, May 26
Neymar to Sign 5-Year Barcelona Deal on Monday
Brazilian superstar Neymar will complete a long awaited move to Europe on Monday, when he will sign with Catalan giants FC Barcelona. (Guardian)
The news was confirmed overnight on Saturday by both the player, current employers Santos and his future Barcelona owners.
Neymar chose to confirm his decision on social media website Instagram, writing: "I'm here with friends and family and they have helped me to write a few things here. I'm not going to hold out until Monday. My family and friends already know my decision. On Monday I will sign a contract with Barcelona."
The deal to take the Brazilian to the Camp Nou will be of undisclosed value, but is reported to be much larger than previous estimates.
Spanish newspaper Marca report that Santos will receive €30 million for their 55% stake in the player, with the total deal including add ons and payments to investors totalling €54 million. (Spanish)
The deal would make him the second most expensive signing in the club's history, behind only Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
A statement on the Barcelona official website read: "FC Barcelona and Santos have agreed to terms for Neymar da Silva Santos Junior. The Brazilian forward will don the Blaugrana strip for the next five seasons. The 21-year old is one of the most promising footballers on the planet."
Neymar to Take Time over Decision: Real or Barca?
Neymar has returned home following a day of meetings at Santos' Vila Belmiro ground on Friday, and must now make a choice between the two clubs who have had offers accepted—believed to be Real Madrid and Barcelona.
The youngster, though, insists it will not be a decision he will rush, and could wait until after this weekend's opening Brazilian championship fixture with Flamengo to make any announcement.
"I'm happy for the interest of both clubs, it makes me proud, but now I must go home as my mother is waiting," Neymar told reporters as he left the ground.
While Barcelona are considered favourites to capture his signature, it is Madrid who are said to be offering more money.
According to the reports, Barcelona have offered a fee of €28 million, while Real Madrid have offered €35 million. Both offers have been accepted. (See next page)
All information courtesy of Terra Brasil.
Santos Accept Two Bids for Neymar
Brazilian side Santos have announced that they have accepted two offers for star striker Neymar, believed to be from Spanish giants Real Madrid and Barcelona.
A statement on the club website read: "Santos FC announces that it has received two proposals for the athlete Neymar da Silva Santos Junior.
"Given the offers and conditions of the player's contract, the management committee of the club decided to transfer the player.
"Neymar Jr and his father are expected in Belmiro to choose which proposal the athlete will accept." (H/T Daily Mail)
It appears, then, that an end to the Neymar transfer novela may be close
Santos Reject €20 Million Barcelona Bid
Santos' board have rejected a €20 million offer from Barcelona for star forward Neymar, says vice president Odilio Rodrigues.
Somewhat surprisingly, reports on the development suggest that the figure is a bid for the entire ownership of the player—rather than just the 55 percent owned by Santos, as had been previously suggested.
"Santos have examined the proposal we received, and it's not in our interests. It was not accepted," Rodrigues told Globo Esporte, without confirming Barcelona as the bidder.
"We only had one proposal on the table, and the board know that it is not what we want. He will continue with the team as usual. He has a contract until 2014."
The vice president did, though, confirm interest from Real Madrid in the player, but refused to speak about the club, preferring to deal only with "facts".
It is suggested that Santos could earn more than the amount they would receive from Barcelona in the proposal by simply keeping Neymar until the end of his contract and releasing him on a free.
Report published on 22 May.
Agent: Deal in Santos' Hands
Neymar's agent Wagner Ribeiro is quoted in Brazil's O Globo (Portuguese) newspaper on Wednesday as saying that Santos will make their latest decision on Neymar's future later in the day.
The paper reports that Barcelona have upped their offer for the player to €20 million, which would purchase them the 45 percent of economic rights owned by the club.
It is worth noting that the figure differs from other media outlets who report that Santos own 55 percent of the player. According to O Globo, Neymar himself owns a 10 percent stake in his ownership.
"It's all in Santos' hands. We will take the proposal to them and they will decide," Ribeiro told reporters on Wednesday. "If it's what Santos want, he will leave. If it's not, he will stay and complete the contract until the end."
The paper goes on to add that, should the offer be accepted, the club would like to switch their fixture with São Paulo immediately following the Confederations Cup to become a home tie—allowing Neymar a send off from the supporters.
The importance of the meeting on Wednesday is shown by the fact it will be held at the house of club president Luis Alvaro Ribeiro, who has been away from day-to-day duties recently due to health reasons.
Santos to Make Decision on Wednesday
Brazilian newspaper O Estado de São Paulo (Portuguese) reports (May 20, 2013) that Santos could confirm the sale of Neymar to Barcelona on Wednesday, when the clubs' directors will meet to discuss the player's future.
The board's nine members have authorised a sale but will meet to decide whether to accept the Catalan club's latest offer.
The price offered for Santos' 55 percent stake in the player is said to have raised from €14 million to €17.5 million, but there are mixed signals as to whether the club will accept the bid.
Santos vice president Odilio Rodrigues (pictured) confirmed that talks are ongoing between the two parties, with Neymar's exit now likely.
Rodrigues told the paper: "We would like Neymar to stay until 2014, but it is difficult. Football is a business and market laws apply."
Such reports have prompted much Twitter speculation, with posts such as the one below gaining much traction. As of yet, though, talk of a Wednesday announcement is speculative, with nothing official on the matter.
BREAKING: Neymar's transfer from Santos to Barcelona to be official on Wednesday.— Santo (@Zizouology) May 20, 2013
Real Madrid Enter the Race
Brazilian sports media giant Globo Esporte (Portuguese) reported on Monday that Real Madrid have followed Barcelona into the hunt for Neymar, with representatives having arrived in Sao Paulo on Saturday.
The website, though quotes Catalan newspaper Sport as saying that Neymar to Barcelona could be sealed as early as Monday, with Real unable to enter the race.
According to Globo, a Barcelona bid of €18 million has been refused—a figure considered "laughable" by the club's board.
They suggest that Barcelona do not intend to go higher than €21.6 million—one-third of his full buyout clause.
News of Real Madrid significantly upping their interest, though, is a major development in the Neymar story.
Santos Expect Further Bids
On Monday morning, Lancenet (Portuguese) reported that Neymar was virtually certain to leave Santos this summer, with the club expecting a series of offers from around Europe this week.
Thus far, they report, the only official offer has been from Barcelona—which they price at €16 million.
Vice president Odilio Rodrigues confirmed that, at the time of publication, there was no accepted bid. However, he added that negotiations were continuing and offers are set to arrive.
"There is nothing confirmed, it depends on the negotiations," he told reporters. "We'd like him to stay until 2014, but it's difficult with the offers we have received.
"Santos are receiving [offers] and will receive more. We will study them to see if they interest us."
Quotes published on May 20, 2013.
Neymar: "Not My Final Game for Santos"
There have been several occasions in recent months when Neymar's frustration with constant media speculation over his future has been made obvious, and it was once more the case on Sunday night as Santos lost the Paulista state title to Corinthians.
Upon full-time, Neymar's future once more became the hottest topic for discussion, and he was the centre of media attention as he made his way back to the dressing room.
"It was not my final game for Santos. I've said it a thousand times," he told reporters upon leaving the pitch. "But, if I say that I'm staying, then it's no good. You will still publish things. That's the way it is."
It is worth noting that he mentions nothing about not leaving, rather that he will play in a Santos jersey in the future. That is to say, he could leave and later return to the club.
Asked about his father's comment that Neymar will play the Brasileirão this year, he added: "If that's what my father said, then it's been said."
All quotes are taken from Terra Brasil (Portuguese) on 19 May 2013.