Brazilian club Santos have asked FIFA to hand Neymar a six-month suspension for what they are calling non-compliance of contract terms during his transfer to Barcelona, according to Brazilian daily O Globo.
The club are seeking the six-month ban and €55 million in damages, alleging that Neymar did not keep the conditions of a transfer, an unnamed source has told the Brazil daily.
The source said the club is invoking Article 17 of the FIFA transfer rules regarding the consequences of terminating a contract without just cause.
A FIFA committee will now decide whether there is sufficient evidence to suspend the Barcelona star, the report said.
The FIFA transfer rules state: “In addition to the obligation to pay compensation, sporting sanctions shall also be imposed on any player found to be in breach of contract during the protected period. This sanction shall be a four-month restriction on playing in official matches. In the case of aggravating circumstances, the restriction shall last six months.”
Santos president Modesto Roma Jr. said he the suit is less “against Neymar” and more “in favor of the club,” according to the report.
The complaint follows the decision by a Brazilian court to freeze the assets of Barcelona star Neymar, his family and related businesses valued at 188.8 million Brazilian reals ($48m, €42m).
A Sao Paulo federal court said last month that the 23-year-old is alleged to have evaded 63m reals in Brazil taxes (almost $16m or €14m) between 2011 and 2013. The Brazil team captain moved in 2013 from Brazilian club Santos to Spain’s Barcelona in a transfer whose payment is also under investigation by Spanish tax authorities.