Barcelona and Brazil stars Philippe Coutinho and Arthur would be open to Neymar’s return to the La Liga club this summer.
Neymar left Barca for Paris Saint-Germain in 2017 for a world-record £200 million transfer fee, having enjoyed tremendous success at the Camp Nou. Speculation has recently started to gather pace that the Blaugrana could try to sign the Brazilian for a second time.
The PSG star is absent from the Copa America because of injury, but both Arthur and Coutinho were still asked about Neymar following the team’s win 5-0 win over Peru on Saturday, per Alvaro Olmedo of Marca.
“Of course I would like it,” Arthur said when quizzed on the potential transfer. “He is a great player. It’s not only me; it’s everyone. The more great players next to each other, the better.”
Coutinho, who joined Barcelona in a club-record £142 million deal in January 2018, also said he would like to link up with Neymar at club level.
“To play with Neymar is incredible,” the midfielder said. “He is a superstar. I don’t know what will happen, but it’s always a source of happiness to speak about playing with him.”
Both Barcelona stars were involved as Brazil coasted to a routine win in the Copa America on Saturday:
According to El Mundo (h/t Football Espana), Barcelona will attempt to sign Neymar again this summer. The Blaugrana will reportedly seek to push Atletico Madrid forward Antoine Griezmann, who has said he will leave Atletico this summer and has been strongly linked with the Catalan club, to PSG.
Per The Spanish Football Podcast, Sunday’s newspapers also contained reports regarding Barcelona’s interest in their former player:
During his four-year spell with Barcelona, Neymar was one of the standout players in La Liga. The division’s Twitter account shared one of his best days in the iconic jersey:
Given how effective Neymar was in an attacking trio with Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi, it was a surprise he opted to join the Paris club.
While he’s been effective when on the field for PSG, Neymar’s spell in the French capital has been disrupted by injury issues. That’s prevented him from helping the team thrive in the UEFA Champions league, and they have suffered consecutive last-16 exits during his time in the French capital.
There have also been consistent rumours about a transfer back to Spain since Neymar left the Camp Nou. As Rafael Hernandez of Grup 14 relayed, surveys suggest Barca supporters aren’t totally sold on a reunion:
For Neymar, the appeal of moving back to Barcelona to link up with Messi and Suarez again is obvious.
Any deal would be a costly one, though, as Neymar still has three years left on his PSG contract. Still, he is one of the best players in the world, and with that in mind it’s not surprising to see Arthur and Coutinho are open to his return.