In declarations made on Catalan TV channel 'Barcelona Televisió', Barça vice-president Josep Maria Bartomeu has become the first member of the club's management to state a public interest in Brazilian striker Neymar, currently with Santos in his native country.
Bartomeu insisted that Neymar was "a player who the Barcelona coaching staff want to sign", and that the Camp Nou outfit were waiting for the striking sensation to make the first move. "When he says he wants to leave Santos, we will try to sign him," he explained, before warning that "half the world" are after the Brazilian sensation.
Although Neymar's contract at Santos expires in 2014, rumours have circulated that the player, capped 28 times by Brazil, could leave this summer. It has been widely reported that an initial agreement has already been reached with the La Liga leaders.
Indeed, Barcelona's last annual report lists an advanced payment of 10 million euros ahead of "a firm commitment" to the value of 40 million euros. However, the exact details of this transaction are not known, and it is not clear if it relates to a deal for Neymar.