The Brazilian wonderkid has long been linked with a move to one of the biggest sides in the world, but Santos President Luis Alvaro Ribeiro has attempted to pour cold water on rumours that the long awaited transfer could be imminent.
The 20 year old striker is currently playing for his country at the Olympic games, and a string of dazzling performances, in which he has scored twice and helped his side ease through the group stage unbeaten, have done nothing to reduce the interest in the technically adroit player.
Barcelona continue to circulate propaganda lining the Brazilian up for a move to join Lionel Messi at the Nou Camp, vice-president Josep Maria Bartomeu recently stoking the flames by saying: “We would all like Neymar to come. He is a Santos player but I am sure Neymar will come to Europe in the future, and when that moment arrives we will be attentive so he can sign for Barcelona.”
His current club are having none of it, with Ribeiro unwilling to enter transfer negotiations for a player who is under long term contract.
“Neymar is a phenomenon and I’m sure that given his performances at the Olympics, this year he will be ranked among the top three players in the world – and we will not be selling him,” said the club president.
“[Barcelona president] Sandro Rosell is a very intelligent man and has enough information available to him to avoid wasting time trying to talk with Neymar [about moving] now. Neymar leaving before 2014 is impossible.”
As one of the most coveted and highly thought of players in the world, Neymar is always going to be a continual source of rumours and speculation. His club may have attempted to draw a line under the matter for the time being, but the media fanfare surrounding the player and his potential transfer will surely continue until he eventually finds his way to one of Europe’s top clubs.