Neymar Explains The Reasons Why He Chose Paris Saint-Germain

Saturday, 05 Aug, 2017

In total, PSG will eventually pay more than $US500 million for Neymar's services. "Leo Messi became my partner, and friend on and off the pitch and I was proud to play with him".

New Paris Saint-Germain signing Neymar Jr and Chairman and CEO Nasser Al-Khelaifi pose with the club shirt in Paris August 4, 2017.

However, the tricks Barcelona turned to get Neymar would leave an indelible stain on the club's holier-than-thou image. "There are new challenges, and I want to help write the history of the club". No, I felt well in Barcelona.

But a statement from Barcelona said: "On Thursday afternoon Neymar's legal representatives visited in person the club's offices and made the payment of €220m (£198m) in the player's name with regards to the unilateral termination of the contract that united both parties". I was never motivated by money, it has never been my first motivation. "I want to dream bigger", he added.

"It is a transfer that has cost a lot today, but that will surely not be the case in two years' time".

Neymar is eligible to play in PSG's season opener against Amiens on Saturday at Parc des Princes and said he was available for coach Unai Emery. "I think 99 percent of the clubs do that but, of course, we can not compete at that level", he said.

However, the action did meet some opposition, with some supporters imploring jilted Barca fans to refrain from burning the shirts and instead accept that Neymar had moved on.

When asked why he chose to leave FC Barcelona for PSG, the Brazilian striker said: "I wanted something bigger".

The record-demolishing deal has drawn criticism, with some saying it contravenes UEFA's Financial Fair Play restrictions which aim to stop clubs spending too far beyond their earnings.

PSG activated the €222m (£198m) release clause in his contract and a move was finalised within hours.

Neymar said it was a hard decision to leave his friends and colleagues behind in Barcelona, who were disappointed to lose the player commonly seen as Messi's heir at Camp Nou. "I regret that people think that and I thank PSG for believing in my potential", he said.

"If I was following the money, I would be somewhere else, with other clubs in other countries".

Neymar has come a long way from the waif-like teenager who harnessed his skills playing five-a-side "futsal" before making his professional debut for Santos eight years ago.

However, Al-Khelaifi said: "We did not buy Neymar because Barcelona wanted Marco. So I think the problem is not Neymar I think the problem is the consequences after Neymar". When you compare that to how other players might have acted, he did very well'. The money was wasted and they didn't win a major trophy for five seasons. Messi posted an emotional farewell video after Neymar bid the players goodbye at the club's Sporting City in Barcelona.