Barcelona make final Neymar offer

Rio de Janeiro, May 24 (IANS) Barcelona have reportedly made a final offer of 23 million euros to sign Brazil international striker Neymar during the European summer transfer window.

The Catalan club’s football director Raul Sanllehi returned to Spain Thursday after a week of negotiations with Neymar’s club Santos and his representatives, Estado de S.Paulo newspaper reported.

The Brazilian outfit has reportedly rejected successive bids of 18 million euros and 20 million euros in the past six days.

Neymar is contracted to Santos until the 2014 World Cup with a buyout clause of 65 million euros.

But under FIFA rules Neymar would be free to negotiate a pre-contract with another club in January, meaning the Sao Paulo-based outfit risks losing the 21-year-old for nothing if an imminent deal is not struck.

Speaking to reporters after Santos’ goalless draw against Joinville in the Copa do Brasil Wednesday, Neymar was cryptic about his future.

“We all know that it takes something more to come out winners here,” he said, when asked about Barcelona’s interest.

Santos coach Muricy Ramalho admitted his interest in signing the club’s former star Robinho, should Neymar leave.

“I saw AC Milan’s game against Siena on the weekend to see how he was playing because we are starting to think about it,” Ramalho said.

“He is an idol of the club and it would be important if we happen to lose the best player in the country (Neymar). Who knows, maybe we will be lucky enough to welcome back Robinho.”

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