Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has discussed speculation linking Barcelona forward Neymar with a move to Old Trafford this summer.
The 25-year-old has had a major impact on the Catalan giants since joining them from Santos in 2013, scoring 99 goals in 172 appearances and winning various pieces of silverware along the way.
However, as noted by the Metro, there has been speculation in recent times of a possible move to United, with the Red Devils having to meet his £173m release clause in order to prise him away from the Nou Camp.
Unfortunately for United supporters, it sounds as though it’s all just media gossip as Mourinho has discussed the possibility of the Brazilian international joining his side and he doesn’t sound too optimistic about it all.
“I always try to be objective and pragmatic with the clubs and ask the clubs for what can be given to me,” he told ESPN Brasil, as reported by the Metro.
“Neymar is absurd. A club like Barcelona cannot and will not lose Neymar. Although [Lionel] Messi is still a young player with years to go – he is still playing well at the age of 30 – but Neymar will be Barcelona’s great player after Messi.
“We will not break into the vault. I think it is impossible.”
Although United showed their financial power last summer with the big-money signing of Paul Pogba from Juventus, it seems as though this one could be a little out of their reach.
Further, Mourinho does have a valid point in that Neymar will be seen as the player to ‘take the throne’ once Messi moves on or is given a less prominent role as he reaches the latter stages of his career.
Nevertheless, Neymar may not be willing to wait for that and while a move to the Premier League could be enough of a draw in itself, time will tell if Mourinho is merely calling Barca’s bluff or if he genuinely believes there is little point in talking about a possible transfer.