Manchester United are willing to break the transfer record once more in order to sign Barcelona forward Neymar, according to reports
According to Sport, Mourinho has “started making contact” with Neymar in order to persuade the Brazilian superstar to join the Red Devils at the end of the season and has been doing this for a few weeks now.
The report claims that Mourinho has been trying to convince Neymar that this is the best next step for his career, and has been regularly calling him as they claim he does whenever he tries to sign a high-profile player.
The futher state that Mourinho sees Neymar as the ideal signing for his Manchester United side as he will bring unpredictability and skill to a side that is “far too often predictable.” They also claim that the Portuguese manager feels Neymar will automatically get them into a Champions League position.
The Brazilian forward joined Barcelona back in 2013 for a fee that has been the subject of some controversy and reportedly ranged from anywhere between £48.5 to £71.5 million, after choosing the Catalans over bitter rivals Real Madrid.
He has since established himself as one of the finest footballers in the world and has already won two La Liga titles and an UEFA Champions League title with the Blaugranes while picking up several individual honours on the way.
At 25, Neymar still has a long career ahead of him and has previously stated that he would be open to a move away from Barcelona. Despite this, Manchester United are going to find it extremely difficult to sign him regardless of what Sport claim.
The Brazilian renewed his contract at the beginning of this season and his current deal runs until 2021, which means Barcelona are under absolutely no pressure to sell their star player if they choose not to.
According to the Independent, Neymar’s new contract has a release clause of around £180million. However, the clause rises to £200million next summer and £225million the year after that following which the five-year deal triggers a renegotiation clause.
While Manchester United certainly have funds available to them, there is no chance Barcelona will even sit at the table regarding a potential deal unless United meet the release clause. Those figures might be possible for United but it could also mean that they will be forced to drop the pursuit of their other targets.
This seems like an almost impossible deal to imagine in the summer and given Sport’s unsubstantiated claim that Mourinho has made contact with Neymar – something that is against the rules unless he has Barcelona’s permission – it seems unlikely that the Brazilian is going anywhere this summer.