To have the best football team in the world, to count on the best player, maybe of all time, and to be a footballing reference point has its downside. That is to say, the negative consequence of Barcelona’s brilliance is to become an object of desire for the powerful, the multimillionaires, who will try and lure their players away with money. Lots of money. And Barcelona know it. They are relatively calm, but the chance of being stung always remains.
Luis Suarez, Neymar and Leo Messi are in fashion.
Messi, permanently so, for many years. His agents and people of confidence, know he is happy at Barcelona, where he dreams of continuing to make history at the Camp Nou, but they cannot dissuade emisaries of other clubs, with large, gold-toothed smiles, offering fortunes. To fight against this reality is a matter of state; the club cannot afford to give up something that has cost so much time and money, forming a dream attack.
In reality, thanks to his age and progression, Neymar is the most coveted piece of Barcelona’s attack. His release fee clause is the most accessible too, at ‘just’ €190million. Suarez’s is 200, Messi’s 250.
Many clubs, including Man United, City and PSG have made plans to sign the Brazilian. Because the risk is real, Barcelona are plotting a contract renovation for Neymar. They know the club will have to pay the price the market indicates, which will always be a litlte bit less than what Messi gets, as he is the best paid player in the squad.
Real Madrid would also love to sign Neymar, knowing he is the natural heir to Messi. Not just to reinforce, but also to significantly weaken Barcelona.
After fixing Neymar’s deal they would move to renew Messi too, whose contract expires in June 2018. It may seem far, but the club would love him to guarantee his retirement at Camp Nou.
With Luis Suarez things are much calmer. He will soon be 29 and nobody is looking to pay his release clause of €200m.
The conclusion is that FC Barcelona have no other option but to use their financial muscle to tie down their stars. Firstly because they deserve it, and second ly to keep powerful clubs from fishing in Camp Nou waters.