No need to bring neymar back to Barcelona, says by Toni Freixa

Toni Freixa, a candidate in the 2015 presidential election at the Liga giants, thinks there is more at play in the deal than mere squad-building


Bringing Neymar back to Barcelona would not be in the club’s best interest, according to former board member Toni Freixa.

Freixa was a board member during the presidencies of Joan Laporta, Sandro Rosell and Josep Maria Bartomeu, as well as a candidate during the 2015 presidential election.

Now, after seeing the club already spending big on Antoine Griezmann’s transfer from Liga rivals Atletico Madrid, he does not think that signing another premium forward should be the immediate priority.

“There are many reasons, I could be speaking for half an hour,” Freixa told Goal of why the club should not re-sign Neymar.

“The main one is that Neymar has spent the last two years in the media because of news far away from football. His quality is incredible but he offers a lot of doubts about his future performance.

“We can speak about how he left. He still has a legal demand against Barcelona. If Barcelona is ready to make this kind of investment… after Griezmann we must think about if we need Neymar.


“I believe in projects which look for the pieces they need, not ones that are just focused on players who are good in their own right.

“I can’t understand a project where you are going to add Neymar to a group with Messi, Griezmann, Suarez, Coutinho and Dembele. It doesn’t look reasonable to me.”


Antoine Griezmann Barcelona 2019-20

Throughout the summer, Neymar has at times seemed on the verge of returning to his old club, while at other points the move has seemed a very long way away .

With the clock now ticking towards the Spanish transfer deadline on September 2, it remains to be seen which colours the Brazilian will be wearing this season.

But, aside from his ability on the pitch, Freixa thinks there is something else at play in pushing these rumours – parties that stand to profit from a deal.

"There's some intermediary involved in his arrival and departure who is interested in the deal,” Freixa claimed.

“Moving these kinds of players is a big deal and people used to care only about the price.

“You must know how much [is being paid] in commissions. If commissions were transparent we could easily understand a lot of deals not being in a club's interest but are in a personal interest.

“Neymar is a clear case to me."

Part of Freixa’s frustrations stem from concerns about Barcelona’s overall financial health.

While Barca released a statement last year claiming to be the first club to reach €1 billion in revenues during the 2017-18 fiscal year, rising debts have threatened long-term projects at the club .

"There's no money for rebuilding Camp Nou, offering another contract renewal to Messi and buying Neymar,” Freixa said.

“I am a bit disappointed with the new Camp Nou [project]. I voted five years ago for a project which was supposed to begin three years ago and it hasn't.

“I understand it is a big job and the club need a lot of cash. I hope they find the money soon because Barcelona needs a top-level ground.”


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