Neymar Parties in Brazil 'Have to Stop' for Barcelona Return, Says Jordi Mestre

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistFebruary 12, 2020

TOPSHOT - Paris Saint-Germain's Brazilian forward Neymar arrives to attend his birthday party on February 2, 2020, at the Yoyo venue in the Palais de Tokyo   in Paris. (Photo by Zakaria ABDELKAFI / AFP) (Photo by ZAKARIA ABDELKAFI/AFP via Getty Images)

Former Barcelona vice-president Jordi Mestre has said Neymar's return to Barcelona could happen, but "all the birthday parties in Brazil would have to stop" in order for the comeback to materialise. 

Neymar has developed a reputation for his lavish celebrations and recently marked his 28th birthday with an "all-white" affair at Parisian nightclub Yoyo, per AS

Mestre told El Mundo Deportivo (h/t Goal's Sacha Pisani) such high-profile events would have to cease if he returned to the Camp Nou, among other conditions:

"The players asked for him but didn't pressure the club. I came off badly in that. If he had come back and the club had benefitted because of it, I wouldn't have a problem with that. I'm not that proud.

"On sporting terms he could come back but on a series of conditions. Firstly, PSG have to agree, then he would have to withdraw his lawsuit and acknowledge that he was in the wrong and after that, all the birthday parties in Brazil would have to stop.

"There were players from the first-team squad who were at a wedding with him but had no idea that he wanted to leave."

His most recent soiree was slightly toned down compared to his 27th birthday party, a Red Bull-sponsored event that drew plenty attention, per AS.

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The Selecao star has missed PSG's two matches since his most recent birthday due to a rib injury, sitting out Ligue 1 wins away to Nantes (1-2) and at home to Lyon (4-2).

El Mundo (h/t AS) reported in December that Neymar took out a fresh €3.5 million (£3 million) claim against Barcelona for unpaid wages. In addition to the signing bonus he was allegedly owed after penning a new contract—prior to joining PSG—Neymar is said to be suing for a total €43.6 million (£36.7 million).

Colin Millar of Football Espana highlighted it's not necessarily a sticking point that Neymar is suing Barca, considering one of the club's playing staff is engaged in a similar dispute:

Mestre—who resigned as Barca vice-president in July 2019—also told El Mundo Deportivo (h/t Football Espana's Colin Millar) a reunion made sense "from a sporting point of view."

Neymar enjoyed a good run of form in the build-up to his recent birthday celebrations:

The South American tied level with team-mate Kylian Mbappe and PSG legend Carlos Bianchi as the only players to have scored in eight successive games for PSG in mid-January.

Off-field distractions can sometimes come as a byproduct of signing football's major talents, but Barcelona may wish to promote a more modest approach than Neymar has become accustomed to in France.

The €222 million world-record signing has a little less than two years remaining on his contract at the Parc des Princes, with talk beginning to escalate regarding a possible extension to his deal.

Barcelona are second to Real Madrid in La Liga and have lost two of their first seven games under Quique Setien.