Santos FC have agreed to the sale of Neymar Jr. to Spanish champions, FC Barcelona.
The wait to find out where ex-Santos star’s future lies, is over. Neymar da Silva Santos Junior will sign a 5 year-contract that is believed to be around the region of 25 million euros.
The 21-year old Brazilian himself confirmed on Saturday that he would be moving to Barcelona. In a rather emotional message to his fans and club, he wrote on Instagram, “On Monday I will sign a contract with Barcelona. I want to thank the fans of Santos for these incredible nine years. My feeling for the club and the fans will never change. It is eternal! Only a club like Santos FC could give me everything I have experienced on and off the field. I thank the wonderful fans who supported me even in the most difficult moments. Titles, goals, dribbling, celebrations and songs that fans created for me will be forever in my heart…”
18th December 2011 was the day Neymar scored against new club, Barcelona in the FIFA Club World Cup. Although Santos lost 4-0 on the night, one could say that it was a day that Neymar was still a winner, as it was the first time Barcelona saw him in the flesh. The Spanish giants also confirmed the capture of Neymar on their website, “FC Barcelona and Santos have agreed to terms for Neymar da Silva Santos Junior. The Brazilian forward will don the Blaugrana strip for the next five seasons. The 21-year old is one of the most promising footballers on the planet.” Neymar will be the latest in a tradition of Brazilian forwards that joined Barcelona that included, Romario, Ronaldo, Rivaldo, and Ronaldinho.
Ever since 2009, the time when Santos had their 17-year old Brazilian wonder-kid, the Brazilian football club has won a host of trophies that includes, the Copa Libertadores da America, Recopa Sudamericana, Copa do Brasil, Campeonato Paulista and more. Although Neymar had a year to run on his contract, it is believed that as soon as Santos allowed Neymar to leave, the final two bids that were accepted were from Spain. “Santos FC announces that it has received two proposals for the athlete Neymar da Silva Santos Junior. Given the offers and conditions of the player’s contract, the management committee of the club decided to transfer the player.” As one of the clubs is undeniably confirmed to be Barcelona, the other is rumored to be Real Madrid, who have been heavily linked to the player for the past few years. Whether Neymar chose Barcelona because of official kit sponsor, Nike, we might hear from the man himself in days to come.
Personally, Neymar has scored an impressive 136 goals in 224 appearances. During his time at Santos FC, he scored more goals than anyone at the club ever since Pele played during the 50s-70s era. Even the Brazilian legend himself, has given his approval to his compatriot although he wished that Neymar wouldn’t leave. “Santos need him and for that reason I don’t think he should leave but if he must go it should be to Barcelona.”
From footballing legend to the best player in the world, Neymar’s new teammate, Lionel Messi had already asked for the Brazilian to join him days before the decision was made. Messi said, “He would be a marvellous acquisition for us. He is one of those players that offers individual solutions that very few players are capable of.” If there were to be anyone to take advice from with regards to being a ‘individual solution’ in football, it would be the four-time consecutive winner of the Ballon D’or who also has a ‘solo’ playing style.
Neymar is widely considered my many to be the future of Brazil in football. Whether his move to Barcelona will have a positive impact on Brazil’s efforts in the upcoming 2014 FIFA World Cup remains to be seen. For now, Neymar will join up with his Barcelona teammates after this summer’s Confederation Cup tournament in June.
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