‘Neymar not bigger than Barca’
Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu yesterday insisted no player is bigger than the Catalan giants in the wake of Neymar’s world record 222 million move to Paris Saint-Germain.
Bartomeu and his board are under pressure to wisely reinvest the huge sum, which more than doubled the previous record for a transfer fee, before the transfer window closes on 31 August.
“No player is above Barca,” Bartomeu told the world congress of Barca supporters groups.
“You know that Neymar formed part of the success of our club, but Neymar is now history. He wanted to go. It was his decision although we did everything in our hands for him to stay.”
Barca were powerless to stop Neymar leaving after PSG met the buyout clause in the Brazilian’s contract, which he had signed just last year.
However, Bartomeu defended himself from criticism that the club should have insisted on inserting a much higher buyout clause in that deal to fend off PSG’s millions.
Neymar’s clause rose from 200 to 222 million from July 1 and would have jumped to 250 million had he entered the third year of the fiveyear deal.