He’s one of the most recognisable stars of the world game, but the PSG trickster Neymar is facing an uncertain future.
He’s currently on the books of French side PSG, but he’s being linked with a move away this season. Neymar joined them in a world-record deal from Spanish giants Barcelona in 2017, but is still set on a departure from the Parc De Princes this season.
Several of the world’s best clubs will be on high alert with the likes of Manchester United and Juventus watching the developments patiently. However, it does seem highly likely that the 27-year-old will wind up back in Spain when he leaves Paris.
A list of failed 2019/20 transfers complied by Ladbrokes explains how Neymar is trying to force a move back to La Liga. Just two clubs will be vying for his signature there with Real Madrid and his former employers, Barcelona leading the way.
Manchester United are the least likely to acquire his services. They’ve failed to qualify for the Champions League, a competition he’s likely to want to feature in. A Talksport article has reported he’s offered himself to Ole Gunnar Solksjaer’s side though and he would fit nicely on the left side of their three man attacking midfield.
United have been playing Marcus Rashford on the left on a 4-2-3-1 formation, but Neymar would make the position his own.
Juventus play a 4-3-3 formation, meaning an out and out left wing position for Neymar if he moves there. This is an interesting prospect; the Brazilian on one flank and Cristiano Ronaldo on the other.
The Express report that Juventus are ready to offer Dybala in a part-swap deal as well, which might tempt PSG into a deal. It’s certainly more attractive in the short term than a possible Barcelona move.
But the Catalans are thought to be preparing a special type of deal, a loan at first but with a sealed agreement to make the transfer permanent after a year. It’s the method by which PSG bought Kylian Mbappe. PSG are not as keen on this as they don’t get a financial boost in the short term.
A move to Barcelona does seem to be Neymar’s favourite option, with Lionel Messi credited by the Bleacher Report as wanting the star back at Camp Nou as well. The problem is Antoine Griezmann’s big-money move, which means they could struggle to pay out any more money this summer.
That leaves Real Madrid, certainly a fine stage for a player of Neymar’s quality but not a highly likely outcome. Few players cross the divide between Barca and Real with success, only Luis Figo has managed it in recent years.
Madrid have also signed Eden Hazard recently, a left winger likely to be their first choice option. Taking on Neymar as well would necessitate a huge change of tactics and would further marginalise Gareth Bale, who is staying put for now.
Plenty of suitors would take Neymar into their squad, but few have the means or the first team places to offer him everything he wants. The very best place in terms of how he would fit in and impact the side would be Manchester United if he can get past not playing in the Champions League.