Bartomeu Accuses Neymar And His Father Of Dishonesty

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has accused Neymar and his father of dishonesty over the Brazilian’s move to PSG.

Bartomeu is adamant the €222m world record signing went back on his word.

He declared on TV: “Officially, we only found out when he said he was leaving, although at the end of July we believed he was not going.

“His father told us that there was no problem. Our self-criticism is to recognize that we believed Neymar – father and son – who told us that they were not going to leave.

“Cesc, Alexis and Pedro were honest and said they wanted to leave Barca.”


Messi Ease Bartomeu Tension, Demolish Juventus

 Josep Maria Bartomeu, Barcelona president hailed Lionel Messi as the best player of all-time as the Argentine raised the mood at the crisis-ridden Catalan giants with a double in a 3-0 thrashing of Juventus to start their Champions League campaign.

Lionel Messi also set up Barca’s second, scored by Ivan Rakitic, as Barca exacted revenge for their 3-0 quarter-final defeat by Juventus in last season’s Champions League quarter-finals.

Bartomeu has faced repeated calls for his resignation after Neymar’s world record move to Paris Saint-Germain last month and Barca’s bungled attempts to replace the Brazilian in the transfer market.

Moreover, Messi is yet to sign an extension to his contract, which is due to expire in June, despite Bartomeu’s insistence that an agreement in principle has been reached with the player.

“Leo Messi is unique, he is the best player in the history of football and he has shown that again in the Champions League,” Bartomeu told Spanish TV station MEGA.

“He shows us in every game, that is why he is the best.”

Messi has also led Barca to a perfect start in La Liga after three games, to open up an early four-point lead over rivals Real Madrid.

And Bartomeu claimed Barca’s start to the season was the reason for the club’s members to reject a vote of no confidence motion against him launched by a former presidential candidate Augusti Benedito.

“The vote of no confidence is something that a member is trying to get off the ground,” added Bartomeu.

“He is within his right to do so, but I don’t think there are the extraordinary conditions for such a motion.

“There is no sporting crisis because we have started the project with Ernesto Valverde very well. Economically the club is in rude health with a record turnover.”

Valverde has suffered plenty at the hands of Messi in his coaching career at Espanyol, Valencia and Athletic Bilbao before being given the reigns at the Camp Nou.

And he admitted it is far easier being on the same side as the five-time World Player of the Year after his first taste of Champions League action as Barca boss.

“I have suffered many times playing against Messi and now I have the luck to have him on my side,” said Valverde.

“We know that when he gets the ball anything can happen. Today he opened up the game in one moment where no one saw the gap and he found it.”

Valverde has already experienced the ups and downs of his new role just over a month into the season as his reign started with a 5-1 thrashing by Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup before a run of four straight victories.

“In football when you lose it seems like you are never going to win and when you win that you will always win,” Valverde added, warning against complacency.

“Inside the club, we need to maintain calm because we know how difficult every game is.”

Bartomeu To Share Monaco Flight With Messi

Josep Maria Bartomeu Barcelona president will share a club flight with Lionel Messi this morning to Monaco.

Barca is sending a major delegation to the Champions League group draw, with Bartomeu and Messi both due to attend. Messi will attend the ceremony after being nominated for the Best Player in Europe last season.

It will be a rare chance for Bartomeu and Messi to speak face-to-face, reports Sport, after a difficult summer market for the club.

Messi has made it clear via third parties he’s unhappy with their work in the transfer window.

It’s suggested the pair will also discuss a date for when Messi finally signs the new contract he agreed over a month ago.


Bartomeu Say “Neymar Is Not Bigger Than Barca”

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu insisted no player is bigger than the Catalan giants on Monday in the wake of Neymar’s world record 222 million euro ($264 million) move to Paris Saint-Germain.

Bartomeu and his board are under pressure to wisely reinvest the huge sum, which more than doubled the previous record for a transfer fee, before the transfer window closes on August 31.

“No player is above Barca,” Bartomeu told the world congress of Barca supporters groups.

“You know that Neymar formed part of the success of our club, but Neymar is now history. He wanted to go. It was his decision although we did everything in our hands for him to stay.”

Barca was powerless to stop Neymar leaving after PSG met the buyout clause in the Brazilian’s contract, which he had signed just last year.

However, Bartomeu defended himself from criticism that the club should have insisted on inserting a much higher buyout clause in that deal to fend off PSG’s millions.

Neymar’s clause rose from 200 to 222 million from July 1 and would have jumped to 250 million had he entered the third year of the five-year deal.

“We foresaw that he could leave in the future, that is why we raised his buyout clause in the new contract,” added Bartomeu.

“Receiving this money allows us to face the future with guarantees to strengthen the team.

“When the doubts over his future began we were calm because his decision would be a good one

“If he stayed we would maintain a great player and if he went, obviously paying his clause, we had the guarantee of being able to bring new players.”

Barca has been linked with a series of potential replacements for Neymar with Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho heading their wish list.

Yet, Bartomeu promised to act with “prudence” despite having to deal in a transfer market characterised by hyperinflation due to booming television rights deals.

“The 222 million euros that we received for Neymar Jr will be administered with prudence, rigour and serenity,” he said.