Brazilian football players in their homeland quite often have a very different structure to their relationship with the club. Where in the UK players are owned solely by the clubs in Brazil more often or not a players ownership rights are often divided among the club and several other subsidiary companies and entities.
It was this problem that caused such issue when Carlos Tevez and Javier Mascherano arrived at West Ham from Corinthians; the idea of third-party ownership that had everyone stupefied.
It has recently made the transfer to Europe of players such as Dede, Leandro Damiao, Ganso and Paulinho almost impossible as teams struggle to negotiate with so many different relevant parties at once; not to mention what it does to the price-tag of a player.
Which brings us to the most sought after talent in Brazil; Neymar. The star of Santos and the Brazilian national team with his impressive array of skills and inflated goal-per-game rate there is little wonder why the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid and Chelsea are all reportedly said to be tracking him this summer; despite the strong belief that the player will not vacate his homeland until after the 2014 World Cup.
But even if one of these teams were to decide to make a bid; they would certainly have to empty their wallets for the privilege.
Because Santos want €50 million for their share of the player alone; which stands at just 55%. The other 45% is made up of a 40% share still held by the investment fund DIS Esporte who were once the strategic partner of Santos who paid for many of the youth team players economic rights, including Neymar, in 2008. The other 5% is owned by a group of businessman with close ties to the club.
For me, somebody who tends to agree with Joey Barton on the actual ability of the 21-year-old, the suggestion he could be worth just €5 million short of €100 million is beyond absurd.
When you consider that Cristiano Ronaldo cost Real Madrid €93.9 million in 2009 there is absolutely no way of justifying such an astonishing fee.
What do you make of the reports? How much is Neymar really worth?
image: © jikatu