Lionel Messi swung Neymar Junior’s move to Barcelona over Real Madrid

Although Paris Saint-Germain might be struggling to find a destination for Neymar Junior, he was once the most sought after attacking talent in Europe. In 2013 he made the switch from Santos to Barcelona, a transfer which is now part of a second court case.

Former Barcelona President Sandro Rosell and Neymar stand accused of corruption between individuals as Brazilian investment company DIS look for reimbursement for the 40% of his rights they owned.

During the testimony, Neymar’s former agent Wagner Ribeiro has appeared in front of the court to give testimony on the deal, where he revealed that Lionel Messi was decisive in bringing Neymar to Barcelona and not Real Madrid. Mundo Deportivo covered his statements.

“He (Messi) wanted Neymar, he made many proposals and so did Barcelona. Whenever Madrid made an offer, Barcelona covered it.”

“Madrid withdrew from the bid after a conversation between Neymar and Messi, which was essential for him to choose the Camp Nou.”

While it is well-known that Messi and Neymar were in contact before the transfer, it goes to show just how much weight the tiny Argentine brought to the club.

His very presence was enough to convince some players to join Barcelona and that attraction must be replaced by rhetoric and money these days.


Image via LaurentLairys/Panoramic

Tags Barcelona Lionel Messi Neymar Junior Real Madrid Wagner Ribeiro
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