FC Barcelona have been under pressure from potential lawsuits over the deal that brought Neymar to Europe
With media pressure heating up, possible consequences were laid out for all to see as Barcelona were in the midst of a lawsuit battle. A possible two year ban from the Champions League, 22 La Liga points deducted – this Neymar deal was a big one.
As rumours were flying about, not surprisingly the majority coming from the Madrid-based papers, former Barcelona president Sandro Rosell resigned. Did Rosell have something to hide? Were Barcelona guilty of one of footballer’s biggest frauds?
According to Spanish press el mundo, the allegations against the Catalans regarding the purchase of Brazilian superstar Neymarwere that Barcelona bought the 22-year-old for €95m, not the €57.1m that was declared.
El mundo broke down the €95m as €40mto the Neymar family, €17m to former side Santos, €7.9m for rights to three further young Santos players, €9m for two friendly games between the clubs, €8.5m in commission to Neymar senior, €2.6m in other agents' fees and a signing-on bonus of €10m – a deal which would be worth more than Real Madrid’s monster transfers of Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo.
However, in a news conference in front of the baying press, Jose Maria Bartomeu took to the stage as new Barcelona president, explaining the Neymar deal as La Masia twitter account provided the quotes:
"There have been a lot of things said about Neymar transfer, but I can guarantee that we have not lied at any point."
"Neymar has allowed to pass around the confidentiality clause in his contract, because he felt what has been happening is unfair."
"Neymar wanted to come here, because he respects the values of our club and wanted to play with Leo Messi."
Sporting director Raul Sanllehi went on to clarify the specific figures involved in the deal:
“Neymar wanted to come here even for less money and we have no apologies to make for signing a player of his quality.”
"The real cost of Neymar's transfer is 57.1 million euros."
"A lot of numbers have been passed around in media that are a lie. Maybe its not a coincidence given where they have come from."
"In addition to the 57.1M we will play two free friendlies against Santos. One game has already been played this summer."
"Infact those games are not free, if anything we've earned 2.5M from that friendly against Santos."
"From the 57.1 million, 40M will go to N&N (Neymar and Nadein) as a signing on bonus."
"Neymar's father showed me a contract from another club worth 100M. 60M to father and 40M to us, but Neymar only wanted Barca."
"Neymar was also going earn twice as much as he does at Barca had he joined the other club."
"Neymar's salary is 8.8M per year for five years. 10M on signing bonus, 2.7M in agent’s commission. Making it 11.3M per year."
"Overall Neymar will earn a salary of 56.7M over the length of his 5 year contract.
"Neymar generates 35M euros on his own every year from sponsors. We have signed the greatest advertisement for Barca in Brazil."
"Neymar is a monster in terms of marketing. So as an incentive for selling Barcelona in Brazil he owns 100% of his image rights."
"We have heard some nasty things in the press recently, (snide remarks like) money going to "supposed" charity organizations."
"We want to assure you that 2.5M over 5 years set for charity organizations will go to the poor communities in Brazil."
As it turns out, it looks increasing likely that the Neymar deal was legitimate, and the lawsuit was a profane attempt at trying to drag Barcelona through the mud and disrupt their fine image and campaign.
Which club could do such a thing? Possibly the one who bid €100m for Neyamr’s services only for the Brazilian to turn it down and accept much less at Barcelona - Real Madrid?