Barca boss: Ney­mar not big­ger than club

Muscat Daily - - SPORTS -

Barcelona, Spain - Barcelona pres­i­dent Josep Maria Bar­tomeu in­sisted no player is big­ger than the Cata­lan gi­ants on Mon­day in the wake of Ney­mar's world record US$264mn move to Paris Saint-Ger­main (PSG).

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 Au­gust 31.

"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 was 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 US$236mn to US$264mn from July 1 and would have jumped to US$296mn had he en­tered the third year of the five-year deal.

"We fore­saw that he could leave in the fu­ture, that is why we raised his buy­out clause in the new con­tact," added Bar­tomeu.

Barca has been linked with a se­ries of po­ten­tial re­place­ments for Ney­mar with Liver­pool's Philippe Coutinho head­ing its wish list.

Yet, Bar­tomeu promised to be act with "pru­dence" de­spite hav­ing to deal in a trans­fer mar­ket char­ac­terised by hy­per­in­fla­tion due to boom­ing tele­vi­sion rights deals.

"The US$264mn that we re­ceived for Ney­mar Jr will be ad­min­is­tered with pru­dence, rigour and seren­ity," he said.

Josep Maria Bar­tomeu

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