BARCELONA

Neymar "a utopian fantasy", Lautaro priority this summer - Barcelona press source

L'Esportiu has cited a senior source at Barcelona, who claims that signing Neymar is "impossible" this summer due to the the financial fallout from the coronavirus crisis.

Neymar "a utopian fantasy", Lautaro priority this summer - Barcelona press source
Handout UEFA

Barcelona will not make a move for PSG star Neymar this summer, according to Catalan outlet L'Esportiu, which cites a senior source from within the club.

L'Esportiu’s Camp Nou source said signing the Brazilian striker is “unfeasible”  summer, adding that the they see the acquisition of Inter Milan’s Lautaro Martinez as a more viable option.

“It is clear that we would like to sign Neymar, but we must be realistic and his return this summer is practically impossible. I would bet more on the signing of Lautaro than on the return of Neymar. Neymar’s return seems like a utopian fantasy.”

Lautaro Martinez

Lautaro over Neymar for Barcelona this summer

The source explains Barcelona will prioritize signing Inter Milan’s Argentine marksman this summer, as Neymar’s inflated salary demands will be hard for Barcelona to meet while the club is bracing for a large drop in income due to the coronavirus crisis.

“If we have to significantly reduce the salaries of the first team, how can you want Neymar to come, a player whose salary is more than 30 million euros net per season? Impossible,” the Camp Nou source explained.

With Barcelona’s annual revenues reportedly set to drop from an expected €1 billion to €600-€800 million, another factor in Barcelona’s decision to prioritise Lautaro is the fact that Inter Milan are willing to listen to offers regarding player swaps, which would make the operation cheaper for the Camp Nou outfit.