Transfer news

Neymar talks up Bayern move possibility

February 7, 2013
By ESPN staff

Santos striker Neymar insists there is nothing that would stop him from joining Bayern Munich, despite reports that he has his heart set on a move to either Barcelona or Real Madrid.

Neymar, 21, is one of the world’s hottest properties and has repeatedly claimed he would stay in Brazil until after the 2014 World Cup. However, reports have suggested that he could be ready to move to Europe this summer for a fee that will exceed £40 million.

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Indeed, the winger claims that he wants to feel settled wherever he ends up and took the opportunity to talk up the German league and Pep Guardiola's new team.

"All leagues are interesting in the end, including the Bundesliga," he told German news outlet SID. "Bayern are a big club with extraordinary players. Playing for Bayern is something I could imagine doing. There is nothing that speaks against this.

"[Bastian] Schweinsteiger is one of the best players I have ever seen. It is the basics that make him strong: his positioning, his passing and his presence on the field.

"I dreamed to play in Europe since I was a child, but it is important I feel good and adapt with the rest of the team. [The transfer] doesn't have to be Spain necessarily."

Santos president Luis Alvaro de Oliveira Ribeiro, however, is adamant his star player is going nowhere yet.

"I anticipate my answer to any bids that might come: the answer is no," he said. "Neymar will stay at Santos until 2014, and I hope that he'll continue here for even longer.

"I have a very clear basis for Neymar staying here, resisting offers from the Spanish clubs [Barcelona and Real Madrid, in 2011], for one basic reason: he's happy.

"He costs us a relatively modest amount of money, given his talent. His presence translates into intangible gains, like our fan base growing 20% in the last two years."