PSG Signs Neymar as Barcelona Accepts £200m Buy out Fee

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Paris St-Germain has signed Brazil forward Neymar for a world record fee of 222m euros (£200m) from Barcelona.

The deal for the 25-year-old smashes the previous record set when Paul Pogba returned to Manchester United from Juventus for £89m in August 2016.

Neymar will earn 45m euros (£40.7m) a year – 865,000 euros (£782,000) a week – before tax from the initial five-year deal, a total outlay of £400m.

Barcelona told the French club PSG it must pay the transfer fee “in full”.

After weeks of speculation, Neymar arrived for training with Barcelona on Wednesday with his father and representative, and told the Spanish club he wanted to leave.

He was then given permission by Barca manager Ernesto Valverde to leave to “sort out his future”.
In Spain, a release clause can only be activated by a player buying himself out of his contract.

But when Neymar’s lawyers attempted to make the deposit thursday, La Liga officials rejected the payment. Further statements followed from all sides as the negotiations continued.

La Liga believes PSG are violating UEFA’s Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules and Barcelona previously said they would report PSG to European football’s governing body UEFA for a FFP breach.

PSG believes La Liga was acting unlawfully, while the French league (LFP) said it was “surprised” and urged its Spanish counterpart to “abide by the FIFA rules”.

So later on Thursday, Neymar’s representatives paid the 222m euros (£200m) fee at Barca’s offices instead
FFP rules, first implemented during the 2011-12 season, stipulate that European clubs cannot outspend what they earn by more than 30m euros.

PSG is backed by money from Gulf state Qatar and La Liga President Javier Tebas has accused the French club of “financial doping”.

Neymar joined Spanish giants Barca in 2013 and has won two La Liga titles and one Champions League
PSG reached the last eight of the Champions League last season – knocked out by a Neymar-inspired Barcelona – and were beaten to the French title by Monaco.

It is the first time PSG – ranked the 11th most valuable club in the world by Forbes – have broken the global transfer record, with Real Madrid paying five of the past six highest fees. The deal dwarfs the £89m Manchester United paid Juventus for Paul Pogba last summer – the previous world record.

His departure from Barcelona breaks up the feted attacking trident he formed with Argentina captain Lionel Messi and Uruguay forward Luis Suarez.

On Thursday, Messi posted on Instagram: “It was a great pleasure to have shared all these years with you my friend Neymar. I wish you good luck in this new stage of your life.” To which Neymar replied: “Thank you brother. I will miss you.”

NEYMAR’S PROFILE

Born in Mogi das Cruzes, a suburb of Sao Paulo, on February 5, 1992
Started his career at Santos after signing a professional contract in January 2009
Remains Santos’ leading goalscorer in the post-Pele era with 138 goals in 229 matches
Real Madrid, Chelsea and Manchester United were all linked before he eventually signed for Barcelona in June 2013 at the age of 21

He made his Barca debut against Levante in August 2013 and went on to score 105 goals and provide 80 assists in 186 games for the Catalan club
Made his international debut aged 18 and he has scored 52 goals in 77 games for Brazil