Barcelona forward Neymar has now told Paris Saint-Germain he wants to move to the Parc des Princes and agreed terms on a contract, a source close to the French club has told ESPN FC.
His decision means PSG can now push forward with their plans to trigger the Brazil international’s €222 million buyout clause.
The source said Neymar and his father, who has been in discussions with PSG’s ambitious Qatari owners and sporting director Antero Henrique for the past few days, have agreed to a massive contract at least four years in length.
If the 25-year-old ends up in Paris, he will be earning approximately €30m a year after taxes and will also be handed an astronomic signing on fee in excess of his net annual sum.
On top of those earnings and significant bonuses, the source indicated Neymar and his father will also profit from a number of club owners Oryx Qatar Sports Investments’ other commercial ventures in Paris and away from the world of football.
According to French newspaper Le Parisien, Barca’s No. 11 — who is currently in the United States with Ernesto Valverde’s men for preseason — has already told some of his current teammates that he is leaving for PSG.
The ESPN FC source indicated that the biggest remaining question is no longer whether or not Neymar is willing to swap Camp Nou for Parc des Princes but how the capital outfit finance what would be a world-record fee.
PSG’s transfer budget at the start of the summer was €220m, all within the framework of UEFA’s financial fair play (FFP) rules.
Although the sale of Jean-Kevin Augustin effectively cancelled out the signatures of Alves and Berchiche in terms of transfer fees — €13m spent and then recouped — players including Serge Aurier, Hatem Ben Arfa, Grzegorz Krychowiak need to be moved on to create sufficient space on the wage bill.
According to the source, a number of methods to complete the Neymar deal are being considered, with almost all of them concerning third parties — notably player and club sponsors Nike. The club know that when they make their move, they must meet the player’s release clause.
If successful, though, PSG’s summer business would not end there. Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez remains a target, while the defence could be boosted by Estudiantes’ Juan Foyth, and Henrique is still very keen on luring Monaco’s Fabinho to Paris to restructure the midfield.
Jonathan Johnson covers PSG and the French national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @Jon_LeGossip.