Transfer news

Neymar in no rush to quit Santos

March 5, 2013
By ESPN staff

Neymar has reiterated that any reports linking him with a transfer away from Santos are untrue and he will only move to Europe when the time is right.

Neymar has been recognised as South America's top player for the past two years
GettyImagesNeymar has 28 caps for Brazil

Neymar, 21, has always insisted he is no rush to prove himself at one of Europe's big clubs, despite newspaper reports that he has already signed a pre-agreement with Barcelona. But Barca are confident of eventually signing Neymar, according to club vice-president Josep Maria Bartomeu.

Real Madrid, Manchester City, Chelsea and Bayern Munich are also known to be keeping tabs on the Brazil international. It has been speculated that Neymar will finally make the much anticipated move next summer after the World Cup finals in his homeland.

Neymar told Placar: "I've said before, if I feel this is the right moment to leave, then why not? They say that I'll leave Santos, that I won't, but I have to stay calm. People make many false stories but I'm happy at Santos, trying to help my team the best way I can. I hope to win games again.

"[Stories that I'll leave now] are made by people that don't know about my life. If I feel it's time to leave, I'll leave. But this is something I'll decide, not somebody else. I'm doing well and happy at Santos.

"There is no contract (with Barcelona), that's not true. [Barcelona's] Daniel Alves is a big friend but if I say [Lionel] Messi will join Santos, will you believe it? I thank Daniel Alves for what he said but I'm happy here."

Alves urged Neymar to join the Catalan giants as soon as possible, and appeared to confirm the reports that a deal was already in place to take the player to the Camp Nou.

Santos have previously stated it would be "impossible" for the striker to leave the club before 2014 when his contract expires. And the club plan to offer the player a new deal in the near future.