BARCELONA | NEYMAR SIGNING
The missing Neymar millions
Barcelona say they paid “17 million euros for the player", and that the rest of the 57 million quoted went to “other parties” not connected to Santos.
Barcelona fired off a reply in no time to the letter they received from Santos requesting an explanation of the amounts involved in the Neymar deal. And the Catalan club confirmed what Santos had said: the transfer fee for the player was 17.1 million euros. But Barça also maintained their version of events, that the whole operation cost 57 million euros. What they didn’t explain was where the other 40 million went.
“The value of the transfer of Neymar’s rights was 17.1 million, as set out in the contract”, said Barcelona in the communication sent to the Brazilian club, according to veteran Brazilian journalist Juca Kfouri, writing in his blog. "The rest of the payments [to take the total to 57 million] were made in relation to previous agreements with third parties not connected to Santos".
The Brazilian club had asked Barcelona to explain the amounts involved in the deal as they “did not understand” why Josep María Bartomeu had said the player "cost 57 million”.
Grupo DIS, holder of 40% of Neymar’s rights, had previously demanded that Santos tell them what the real transfer fee for Neymar was and for an explanation of the amount mentioned by Bartomeu. This is as yet a mystery.
Barcelona’s explanation to Santos would suggest that the player, his father and the agents involved in the deal were the major beneficiaries of the transfer, and that the signing bonus for the striker may have been double the actual value of his transfer. It should be remembered though that Santos had little room for manoeuvre as Neymar’s contract was up next year and there was the risk of losing the player for no fee.