Barcelona's technical director, Robert Fernandez, has insisted that Neymar is happy at the Camp Nou despite ongoing off-field issues and consistent links with a Premier League move.
Since his switch to Barca from Santos in 2013, Neymar has been embroiled in accusations over tax avoidance. Meanwhile, the recent confirmation that former Blaugrana boss Pep Guardiola will take over at Manchester City in the summer has sparked links with the Sky Blues, and Manchester United also remain interested in the Brazilian, per Joe Bernstein in the Mail on Sunday.
Will Neymar leave Barcelona in 2016?
Neymar's father, who also serves as his agent, was involved in a heated exchange with reporters recently during his son's 24th birthday celebrations, but Barca chief Fernandez brushed off the issue, per Marca: "Neymar and his management are very happy and we are very relaxed. The club stands by the player. These things happen and we shouldn't dwell on it. The important thing is that he is happy and that's something we can see in every game he plays."
It is certainly true that Neymar looks to be enjoying his time on the pitch at Barca. He is currently playing some of the best football of his career and has returned 16 La Liga goals and nine assists in just 19 appearances in 2015-16, per WhoScored.com.
Alongside Lionel Messi and Luis Saurez, he is part of arguably the best front three football has ever seen, while Luis Enrique's side could well be on for another Liga, Copa del Rey and UEFA Champions League treble this season, per Bleacher Report's Sam Tighe and Dean Jones:
However, there has still been no resolution over Neymar signing a new contract with the Catalan giants, and his current deal is set to run out in 2018.
Neymar Sr. revealed back in November that the ongoing tax issues were causing major problems and could result in the forward leaving Spain if they were not resolved, per Sky Sports.
Given that a resolution has yet to be reached and Neymar's relationship with the Spanish press is seemingly strained, it is not inconceivable that he could depart the Camp Nou.
Furthermore, the attraction of joining Guardiola at City would likely be huge, especially as the Manchester outfit could afford to pay Neymar handsomely for his services.
His prospects, though, could not be better anywhere else other than Barca. They are arguably the best team in the world at the moment, and Neymar is enjoying terrific form at the Camp Nou.
Barca would be ill advised to play hardball over his contract, as he is sure to be a major asset at the club for years to come—and is the obvious successor to Messi—and once Neymar puts pen to paper, the rumours of his potential departure will subside.