Paris Saint-Germain superstar Neymar has provided clarity over his future amid growing speculations over his potential summer exit.
Neymar quitted Barcelona to link up with Paris Saint-Germain for a record-breaking €222million transfer fee in the summer of 2017. Despite enduring several injury setbacks throughout his three-and-a-half-year spell in Paris, the Brazilian forward has been going from strength to strength, helping PSG re-establish their dominance of Ligue 1. However, PSG’s lack of success on the European front has prompted talks about Neymar’s potential departure.
Among a host of European juggernauts interested in landing Neymar, Barcelona have emerged as the likeliest candidates to end their former star’s career in the French capital. Rumors linking the 28-year-old with a return to Camp Nou had intensified on the eve of the coronavirus lockdown, with Lionel Messi reportedly pressuring Barca to complete the deal. However, the COVID-19 crisis has put the squeeze on the Catalan side’s finances, forcing them to drop their pursuit of Neymar last summer. Since then, only sporadic speculations have continued to connect the Brazil international with a possible Barcelona reunion.
Neymar played a starring role in PSG’s dismal trip to relegation-threatened Lorient on Sunday afternoon. Despite netting a brace from the penalty spot, the Brazilian’s efforts proved insufficient to help the reigning French champions avoid defeat at the Stade du Moustoir. Indeed, the newly-promoted Lorient claimed an all-important 3-2 victory to bridge the gap on 17th-placed Nantes. Though they must be disappointed to see their team surrender the points to the Ligue 1 minnows, the PSG supporters may still have a reason to celebrate.
During the post-match interview, Neymar broke the silence about his current feelings in Paris, shedding new light on his future.
“I am happy today. I am truly happy,” the forward told TF1.
“Things have changed a lot. I can’t exactly explain why. But today, I am feeling good. I have adapted. I am calmer, and I am happier. I want to stay at PSG.”
Neymar declares he wants to stay at PSG, with Kylian Mbappe 🤝 pic.twitter.com/8pkI54ucDl— B/R Football (@brfootball) January 31, 2021
Not only Neymar, but Kylian Mbappe’s future at the Parc des Princes has been hanging in the balance for quite some time now. But, the former appears to be eager to persuade his partner in crime to stay on board.
“I also want Kylian to stay. We want PSG to be a great team. I want to continue to play football and be happy; that is the most important thing,” Neymar added.
“With Kylian Mbappe, we have a relationship of brothers. I am the eldest. We really like to play together.
“I want to get the best out of him. He’s a golden boy. I call him ‘Golden Boy’ because he’s really golden. He has a huge heart. As a footballer, you know what he is worth, but even off the pitch, he is amazing.
“He is smiling, happy, he knows how to have fun. We are very similar, and we have to be happy to be 100 percent.”