Furious Barcelona terminate Neymar’s contract after accepting €222m fee


Brazilian forward, Neymar, is a free agent after Barcelona accepted a payment of €222 million that activates his buyout clause, clearing the way for a world-record move to Paris Saint-Germain.

Neymar, 25, is set to sign for the French clubfor a world record fee, after telling Barca he wanted to leave on Wednesday.

His lawyers paid the sum in person at Barca’s offices.

Earlier on Thursday, Spain’s top league La Liga rejected an attempt to pay it the fee over concerns PSG are violating Uefa’s Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules.

In a statement, Barca said they “will pass on to Uefa the details of the above operation so that they can determine the disciplinary responsibilities that may arise from this case”.

The club said previously that they would report PSG to Uefa, European football’s governing body, for a breach of FFP rules.

“On Thursday afternoon Neymar’s legal representatives visited in person the club’s offices and made the payment of 222m euros in the player’s name with regards to the unilateral termination of the contract that united both parties,” Barca’s statement read.

In Spain, a player must buy himself out of his contract.

This is usually done by depositing the amount of the buyout clause with La Liga – Spain’s equivalent of the Premier League – to release the player from his contract. The league then passes the money to the selling club.

“We can confirm that the lawyers of the player have come to La Liga to deposit the clause and that it has been rejected,” La Liga told BBC Sport before the payment was made directly to Barcelona.

Neymar is now expected to arrive in the French capital on Thursday night to put pen to paper on a five-year deal with PSG worth €30m annually after tax.

A presentation is planned for Friday, and it is possible he could debut in PSG’s Ligue 1 opener at home against Amiens on Saturday.

Once PSG confirms Neymar’s signing, he will become the most expensive transfer ever – more than doubling Manchester United’s €105m capture of Paul Pogba from Juventus last year.