The two routes which could bring Neymar back to Barcelona

Barça are facing the most difficult transfer operation in club history. Neymar's return to Camp Nou depends on PSG's owner, who wants 222 million euros for the player.


In the back offices at Camp Nou, Barcelona's technical team are scratching their heads to come up with a way of luring Neymar back to the club - they know it's going to be a difficult operation and a lengthy process. First of all because of the high cost of signing the Brazilian star and secondly for the tense relationship the club has with PSG. And last but not least for the number of players who could be affected if the transfer goes through.

Barça have managed to boil down their options to two possible routes and neither of which will be easy. The first involves persuading PSG owner Al-Khelaifi to accept other Barça players as makeweights to reduce the asking price. The other option would be to sell those players to raise enough cash to buy Neymar at face value - 222 million euros - the same price PSG paid the Blaugranas for the forward a couple of years ago.

Brittle relationship

One way or another it's going to be a painful operation. There is little love between Barcelona and PSG - the Catalans haven't forgotten how they were fobbed off when trying to negotiate for PSG players in the past. They were given the cold shoulder when they attempted to buy Thiago Silva, Marquinhos, Verratti and more recently, Rabiot. And then Al-Khelaifi snatched Neymar...

Barcelona would also have the difficult task of coaxing Dembélé and Coutinho (and possibly Rakitic) to go in the opposite direction as makeweights in the operation - and for PSG to accept them.

The other option would be to sell Dembélé and Coutinho to raise the 200 million euros PSG want for Neymar. According to France Football, Bayern Munich are interested in Dembélé, who has experience in the Bundesliga for the time he spent at Dortmund, while Coutinho has suitors in the Premier League. Whatever happens it's clear that Valverde does not want six stars in his attack next season. If Griezmann and Neymar arrive, there would be no place for Coutinho and Dembélé at Camp Nou.