Barcelona are confident that they can complete a deal to sign Neymar before the end of the summer transfer window following face-to-face talks between the Blaugrana and Paris Saint-Germain in Paris on Tuesday afternoon, Goal can confirm.
A delegation that included CEO Oscar Grau, the man with the keys to Barca’s treasury, travelled to France with an offer of €160 million (£144m/$177m) plus bonuses for the Brazilian, to be paid in three instalments in order to keep in line with Financial Fair Play.
PSG, however, are asking for €100m (£90m/$111m) plus full-back Nelson Semedo. And the Catalans would rather not include any of their current crop of players in a deal that would see Neymar return to Camp Nou.
Regardless of the difference of opinion regarding payment, it is understood that Barca are now confident of reaching an agreement with the French champions – so confident, in fact, that they believe a deal could even be reached within a matter of hours rather than days.
“We don’t have an agreement yet,” Barca executive Javier Bordas told the press upon returning to Catalunya on Tuesday. “We are still talking but we are closer.”
For Neymar’s part, the attacker spoke to PSG sporting director Leonardo on Monday and conveyed his desire to sign only for the Liga champions, with Real Madrid seemingly not having shown enough interest to turn the Brazilian’s head.
In doing so, it is thought that the Parisian side are now more open to selling to Barca, having previously preferred to move on their star attacker to any other side due to the previous breakdown in relationship between the two clubs.
The presence of Grau in Paris cannot be understated either, with the chief executive officer fully in charge of Barcelona’s transfer funds. With Grau in France, a transfer would likely be wrapped up swiftly should the two clubs come to an accord on compensation.
Previously, the main sticking point in Barca moving for Neymar had been FFP regulations, with the Catalan club first having to get Philippe Coutinho’s wages off their books to make room for his fellow Brazil international at Camp Nou.
With Coutinho now having signed for Bayern Munich on a loan deal with an option to purchase, the final pieces of the Neymar puzzle could well be put together in Paris in the coming days and see the 27-year-old once again link up with Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez at the head of Barca’s attack.