Rosell: Neymar wanted Barcelona more than Chelsea and Real Madrid
As Real Madrid continue to be surrounded by fitness issues of record signing Gareth Bale and inability to control matches, Barcelona are laughing all the way to the top of the table. Barcelona themselves made a big-money signing in the form of Neymar, who was linked with several top clubs across Europe for a long time. President Sandro Rosell has revealed that the Catalan club managed to sign Neymar only after beating the likes of Manchester City, Chelsea, Bayern Munich, and most significantly, Real Madrid.
Speaking to Marca, he said that the deal was finalised when he held talks with Neymar's father in Miami. He said,
"I spoke with his father when we met in Miami and we closed the deal there. There were four parties that owned his rights as part of the agreement and we had to agree with all of those, but in the end we closed the deal for €57.5 million.
"The key was that the player wanted to come to Barcelona. Everything was based on that despite offers he had from Man City, Chelsea, Bayern and Real Madrid."
Undoubtedly, this will rub salts into the wounds of Madrid, who are already five points behind Barcelona. His comments also come at a convenient time when the El Clasico is just around the corner. Neymar has been a success for Barcelona so far, despite not starting matches regularly early in the season. Even though he is yet to find regular goal scoring form, he has been contributing immensely in the way of assists.
He already has five assists in the league in addition to the two goals.
Perez said that Real Madrid were unable to complete the Neymar deal because it was too expensive, but they went out and bought a player for £86 million just a few weeks later. Bale may well turn out to be an enormous success as Cristiano Ronaldo, but for the moment, but Barcelona enjoy the upper hand for now.