Neymar is one of the hottest products in global football. He’s announced that he wants to come to Europe but it’s anyone’s guess as to where he will eventually end up.
Barcelona are one such candidate and they could well attract him without any help whatsoever but they have the added advantage of Dani Alves, a close friend of Neymar, and Barca have apparently told him to do what he can to convince the star to sign at the Nou Camp.
It doesn’t seem fair or right that Barcelona would pile the pressure onto a player in such a way, especially when it’s over something hypothetical which may not happen.
However, Alves has shown no indication that he objects to playing a little side role to his normal duties at Barcelona and considering his personality, it could turn out to be something he relishes.
It gives Barca a natural advantage compared to other sides like Chelsea who have been courting Neymar for a good deal of time.
The message that Alves can stress is a simple one. If Neymar signs alongside the likes of Lionel Messi, Xavi, Andres Iniesta and the rest, Barca could become an even more unstoppable force than they already are.
The fee being talked about is likely to be in excess of £50 million considering Neymar has resisted the chance to move to Europe at an earlier age.
He has had time to develop into an extremely strong and talented player with his commercial potential growing all the time. This is why Santos will not be willing to let him leave on the cheap.
What’s going to be decisive in this battle for the Brazilian is how the other sides react because it’s naïve to suggest that Alves is the only third party that would be able to get word to Neymar in a subtle way.
Then there is the issue of personal terms. Make no mistake about it, when Neymar does move to Europe, he will be on of the best paid players in European football so there could be a mini bidding war breaking out in this respect.
As it stands, Barca certainly have the stature to sign him. He also has friends at the club and a move to Spain would be preferable in terms of settling in.
Chelsea, and the rest, will not give up without a fight and there is also the manager factor to consider because Neymar could be tempted to Stamford Bridge or another side because of the manager.
It’s anyone’s guess.
Where do you think Neymar will go when he leaves Santos?