Barcelona

Barça: Neymar "not impossible," as Abidal seeks to soothe Messi

The Barcelona sporting director sought to turn the page by suggesting the club will keep tabs on Neymar and Lautaro Martinez at the end of the season.

Barcelona move for Neymar 'not impossible', says Abidal

Barcelona director of football Éric Abidal has been the focus of plenty of unwanted attention after an ill-advised interview with Catalan daily Sport in which he suggested Barça players hasd not given it their all towards the end of Ernesto Valverde's reign, a comment which drew an immediate rebuke from Leo Messi.

But in another chat with another regional newspaper, the Camp Nou sporting director said something that will be a balm to Barça fans in these tumultuous times when he suggested that the club's long-standing desire to bring Neymar back to Camp Nou from Paris Saint-Germain is "not impossible".

Neymar left Camp Nou for Paris Saint-Germain in acrimonious circumstances in August 2017 for a world record fee of €222 million but suggestions of a return have lingered ever since, with Messi being quite vocal about his desire to be reunited with his former strike partner. 

The Brazil star's time in France has not always been easy with injuries and off-field issues blighting his bid to challenge Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo as the world's best player. But he, along with Inter striker Lautaro Martínez, are seemingly on Barca's wish-list.

Abidal on Neymar, Lautaro: "We will try to work for that" 

Abidal told El Mundo Deportivo: "It depends on planning, passports and many things.

"The important thing for me is the sporting aspect, trying to have a stronger team to reach our goals as a club.

"But having talented players like Lautaro, Neymar or others would always be good for the club. I don't see it as impossible. We will try to work for that."

It has been reported that Neymar has a clause in his contract that would enable him to leave the Parc des Princes for €170m at the end of the season.

"It gives you a price, but the price would be the same for all clubs. not just Barça," added Abidal, whose public exchange of views with Lionel Messi over Ernesto Valverde's exit means he may not be in the job long enough to oversee summer recruitment.

"The decision is always that of the player. If we can do that signing it would be good but we're always thinking that Barça has the philosophy of seeing what happens in the B team and youth teams. We always take into account what is already here when we do our planning."