Rosell: Neymar 'wanted to play next to Messi'
Barcelona president Sandro Rosell claims Neymar turned down offers from Bayern Munich, Chelsea, Manchester City and Real Madrid to play alongside Lionel Messi.
The Brazilian joined Barça in the summer from Santos. Rosell admits negotiations were complex, but helped by the 21 year-old’s preference for the Catalan side and a desire to work with Messi.
"I spoke with his father when we met in Miami and we closed the deal there," he told Cadena SER, as reported by Football Espana.
"There were four parties that owned his rights as part of the agreement and we had to agree with all of those, but in the end we closed the deal for €57.5 million.
"The key was that the player wanted to come to Barcelona. It was not about knowing how to negotiate; he wanted to be play next to Messi and the rest of the team.
"Everything was based on that despite him having offers from Manchester City, Chelsea, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid.
Rosell also praised Neymar’s character and the way he has quickly adjusted to life in Spain, after such a high profile transfer.
"Neymar's a very humble, friendly guy, a great team-mate and a great player,” the 49 year-old continued. “He is not selfish on the ball, which is just what we want in a football player. Has has settled perfectly into the squad."
Neymar has made seven appearances in La Liga this season, scoring twice. He is currently on international duty with Brazil, who play South Korea is Seoul on Saturday.