In a rather heartbreaking news for Barcelona fans and fraternity, the club’s president Josep Maria Bartomeu has ruled out the highly anticipated transfer of Neymar Jr back to Barcelona. In a recent revelation, Bartomeu has termed such a transfer as highly unlikely due to an array of reasons brought about by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Neymar left Barcelona for Paris Saint Germain in a then world record fee of €222million deal back in 2017. And three years later, a likely return to Camp Nou for the Brazilian forward has been looming.
However, given the continued crisis facing football clubs as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, Bartomeu feels such a move is highly unlikely given the current financial situations. Bartomeu admitted that the situation has been and continues to be so tricky for Europe’s elite football clubs. And when asked about the likelihood of Barcelona going for Inter Milan’s Lautaro Martinez should they loose out on Neymar, Bartomeu was non committal. He stated that he would not be engaged in such a conversation as they had not laid out a calendar for transfers.
Lautaro Martinez, Messi’s fellow Argentinian, has been making headlines in Barcelona given the club’s constant link with him. He has been so prolific for Inter, netting 17 goals in 37 appearance so far this season. And given the fact that the 22 years old has a contract at Inter until 2023, Barcelona would be keeping tabs on him in case of any eventuality. But be it as it may, Juventus Miralem Pjanic’s swap deal with Barcelona’s Arthur is a done deal. With the two players expected to switch clubs at the end of the season.
Pjanic has been a long term target of Barcelona as they look to bolster their midfield. Bartomeu also sort to refute claims that Barca offloaded Arthur to balance their books of account as they prepare for either Lautaro Martinez or Neymar Jr. He insisted that Pjanic had been a long time target for Barca and that it had nothing to do with money. It will be interesting to see how Barcelona navigates the upcoming transfer market. And most importantly whether it would be Martinez or Neymar Jr, or even Arsenal’s Pierre Emerick Aubameyang.