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Phew! Neymar’s on his way, for £200m

BARCELONA, SPAIN – OCTOBER 15: Neymar Jr. of FC Barcelona looks on during the La Liga match between FC Barcelona and RC Deportivo La Coruna at Camp Nou stadium on October 15, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

NEYMAR’S breath-taking £200-million-plus move to Paris Saint-Germain – via a release clause – was not a given because, it has been claimed, Manchester United big-wigs negotiated the same deal last summer.

French newspaper L’Equipe is admant that Barcelona’s Brazilian star had agreed personal terms with Old Trafford, only for the move to break down at the last minute.

United, long-term admirers of the 25-year-old striker, now the most expensive footballer by miles, first held talks with his representatives in 2015, as revealed by The Sun.

The Premier League giants were certain he was ready to step out of Lionel Messi’s shadow at Barcelona last year and become the main man.

Now, though, PSG appear to have secured the sensational deal, with Neymar telling his team-mates he was on his way yesterday (Thursday).

The Parisians gave Barcelona no choice but to accept after triggering the superstar’s mind-blowing release clause.

And Neymar has finally decided he is ready to move on after years of learning from Messi, the all-time-great.

And with PSG, who came close to knocking Barca out of Europe this year, he will have a brilliant platform to launch an assault on football’s most coveted individual prize, the Ballon d’Or.

To make things easier for him, playing for the Ligue 1 club has the added advantage of a less-gruelling, domestic schedule, with the World Cup on the horizon.

Brazil will have their work cut out to lift the trophy on European soil, but they know their talisman is capable of leading them to glory.

Liverpool coach Jurgen Klopp has expressed criticism of Neymar’s anticipated move, saying he hoped such deals would stay “an exception” in football.

After his team’s defeat in the Audi Cup Final, a pre-season tournament in Munich, the German said there were only two or three clubs in the world who could afford a transfer fee of that size.

“I always thought ‘Financial Fair Play’ was invented so that things like this don’t happen,” Klopp told reporters, referring to financial-performance regulations introduced six years ago by Uefa, Europe’s football governing body.

“But, obviously, ‘Financial Fair Play’ is more of a suggestion rather than an actual rule. I don’t know… I don’t understand it!” Klopp said.

Yet Uefa told The Telegraph that Financial Fair Play regulations would be enforced in the case of the Neymar transfer, and that clubs were not permitted to make losses in excess of £50m over three years.

The regulations were put in place so that European football clubs don’t spend more than they earn.

“This is not the next step,” Klopp told reporters. “I believe and hope that this will remain an exception, but who knows.”

Short URL: http://www.canarianweekly.com/?p=37139

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