NEymar

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Neymar set to make PSG debut at Guingamp

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After an administrative snafu kept him off the field, Paris Saint-Germain could debut its record signing Neymar this weekend.

The French Football Federation announced in a tweet on its official account that it had received Neymar’s international transfer certificate from the Spanish Football Federation, clearing the Brazilian to take the field for PSG on Sunday at Guingamp.

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Even without Neymar, PSG easily dispatched Amiens, 2-0 last Saturday in the Ligue 1 season opener.

Neymar asks to leave Barcelona, club confirms

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The Neymar transfer saga is reaching its climax.

Early Wednesday morning, FC Barcelona released a statement that Neymar and his father Neymar Santos Sr. had expressed their desire to leave the club following a meeting with team executives. It’s been widely reported that Paris Saint-Germain is Neymar’s next destination.

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The club also confirmed that while Neymar remains under contract at Barcelona, he has permission to stay away from preseason training.

Barcelona’s response to Neymar and his family was to say that the €222 million ($262.57 million) buy-out clause must be paid in full, which if done so, would make Neymar the world’s most expensive transfer.

Neymar is coming off a strong performance for Barcelona at the International Champions Cup in the U.S., scoring three goals with two assists over the three-game tour. However, since before the trip to America, it’s been rumored that Neymar wants to leave the club for a variety of reasons, with PSG the club strongest linked to be willing and able to pay the huge release clause.

Neymar’s transfer to PSG would send seismic shocks across the soccer landscape. While he’s surely a star and likely worth that amount of money, his transfer would raise a new bar for other players to meet in the future, and it would likely raise the price of transfers for players near his stratosphere of skill level.

But even more importantly, it would raise the pressure on Neymar, who at PSG would become the man, just like Zlatan Ibrahamovic was during his four-year stay. Nothing short of a league title and UEFA Champions League glory would suffice for Neymar if he does move to PSG for more than $260 million, and that’s a level of pressure thankfully most of us won’t ever have to shoulder in our lives.

The news also likely brings an end to Neymar’s time in Barcelona, where he grew from a starlet into a world star worthy of having a team built around him. Neymar appeared in 186 games in all competitions for Barcelona since joining the club from Santos, scoring 106 goals and dishing out 57 assists, including 21 last season.

Neymar storms off after training dustup with teammate

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Neymar just won’t stay out of the headlines.

As his long-rumored “will he, won’t he go” transfer saga between Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona continues, Neymar stormed out of training on Thursday after getting into a tussle with teammate Nelson Semedo.

A video from the Daily Mail shows Neymar pushing Semedo before walking off and removing his training bib.

Neymar has reportedly agreed to personal terms with PSG over a move to France, but PSG have yet to come up with the nearly $260 million it would cost to trigger Neymar’s release clause. The news of Neymar possibly leaving Barcelona came as a shock, as he’s been content since joining the club to play slightly in the shadow of teammates Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.

If this fight is any indication, Neymar’s head could be turned and should PSG trigger the release clause, Neymar could be heading to Paris once Barcelona returns this weekend from its American sojourn.

In spite of all the transfer speculation, Neymar has dazzled for Barcelona on its tour of the U.S., scoring three goals in two games and delighting the thousands in attendance.

Report: Paris Saint-Germain readying $225 million Neymar offer

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The idea of MSN breaking up just as Neymar hits his prime seem a bit farfetched, but money does talk, doesn’t it?

Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, and Neymar combined to score 131 goals for Barcelona last season, and have added 21 more to start this Barca campaign.

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But Goal.com says that Paris Saint-Germain is waiting in the wings. Just months after allegedly going hard at Neymar, the French giants are said to be ready to put together a massive deal to pry the forward from Barca.

According to Goal.com:

Paris Saint-Germain is ready to renew its efforts to sign Barcelona star Neymar, and is planning a bumper package worth up to 200 million euros in order to land its man, sources tell Goal France.

That’s around $225 million, and there is reason to think Barcelona could consider a sale. For one thing: that’s a crazy amount of dough. For another, consider that Barca is scheduled to have a summer transfer window without competition from Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid due to transfer bans.

Zidane, Simeone, Enrique defend Neymar’s criticized late-game antics

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MADRID (AP) Even rivals are coming out to defend Neymar after his late-game antics got him into trouble in the Spanish league.

The Brazil forward use his ball trickery in Barcelona’s 5-1 win over Leganes last week, prompting a wave of criticism from people who accused him of showing off and trying to provoke opponents. Neymar appeared to ignore the un-written convention that top players should not make lesser opponents look foolish.

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Three key former players who turned coaches supported Neymar on Tuesday, the day before Barcelona’s game against rival Atletico Madrid.

“Neymar has fun playing football. They can criticize him as much as they want, but he responds where he needs to respond,” Atletico coach Diego Simeone said. “He has his own style. He is an extraordinary player.”

With the victory safely secured on Saturday, Neymar used back-heel passes and other nifty moves against Leganes defenders. He scored one of the team’s goals in the 44th minute and was fouled inside the area – leading to a penalty kick converted by Lionel Messi in the 55th.

Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane said he didn’t think Neymar was disrespecting his opponents.

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“I don’t think he is trying to provoke anybody,” the former France midfielder said. “He can do things that not a lot of players can do. You would have to ask him directly, but I don’t think it’s a provocation.”

Barcelona coach Luis Enrique said Neymar’s style shouldn’t surprise anybody.

“He has been playing like this since he got here,” Luis Enrique said. “And we want him to keep his playing like this, we enjoy it. He is allowed by the rules to do what he does.”

Tales Azzoni is on Twitter, and his work can be found here.