Neymar's Proposed Move to PSG Could Have Massive Ripple Effect Across Europe

1:13 | Soccer
Will PSG actually spend $255 million to take Neymar from Barcelona?
Thursday July 27th, 2017

At €220m, Neymar stands to become the most expensive player in history if he decides to go with Paris Saint-Germain's offer and turn his back on Barcelona.

Personal ambition is the driving force. The Brazilian is thought to be keen on stepping out of Lionel Messi's shadow at Camp Nou, his best chance to land a coveted Ballon d'Or and become the best player in the world that his potential has always suggested he should be.

A refusal from Barcelona to offer him the terms that they were later happy to give Messi - it is said Neymar was informed by the club they couldn't afford to pay anyone that much money - is also apparently a factor in the 25-year-old's frustrations.

But as is the case with Kylian Mbappe's proposed move to Real Madrid, it will likely be more than just Neymar who is affected by the transfer if it does indeed happen.

Should Brazil's national talisman depart, there will be a gaping hole to fill in Catalunya. Barça will still have Messi and Luis Suarez, but after a season in which the club was second best to Real Madrid in Spain there is still a need to strengthen.

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Crucially, for a club short on readily available cash in the last few years, the money from the enormous Neymar deal should at least provide Barça with the funds to make things happen. The two obvious players on the radar are Marco Verratti and Philippe Coutinho.

Verratti has long been a Barcelona target and is himself believed to be keen on making the move. PSG have so far refused to negotiate, but would Neymar heading to Paris make them more or less willing to co-operate? In spending so much on Neymar, would they also have to make a large sale to ensure they remain in line with UEFA's Financial Fair Play rules?

If Barcelona were willing to spend €60m or €70m on Verratti anyway, the Neymar lottery win could surely allow them to spend €100m without much worry.

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Then there is Coutinho. Liverpool are reported to have rejected at least one bid totalling €80m so far and seem determined not to sell a player who signed a new long-term contract just last season. But again, if that figure starts to climb and reaches €100m (£89m), well surpassing the fee that Barça paid for Luis Suarez in 2014, might their stance begin to soften?

The latest rumour from Spain is that Liverpool want around £133m. Yet one would imagine they might consider the financial opportunity that presents itself before the offers get quite so high.

With Neymar at PSG, Verratti potentially at Barcelona and Coutinho going too, attention will then turn to Liverpool and how the Reds use the money to replace their departed superstar.

With Brendan Rodgers and the infamous Anfield 'transfer committee', the Suarez money was poorly frittered away in 2014, leaving Liverpool going a long way backwards when they should have at least been able to remain competitive in the Premier League.

Should the Reds lose Coutinho for big money, common sense would immediately make it clear that a similar attacking player who can change games like the Brazilian is a must. That is what they specifically failed to do with Suarez, instead buying quantity over quality.

But there is a possibility that after already signing Mohamed Salah anyway and having the likes of Divock Origi, Daniel Sturridge and even Danny Ings as alternative attacking options beyond Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino, the focus could be elsewhere.

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Would Liverpool use the Coutinho money instead to finally buy Virgil van Dijk, meeting Soutampton's excessive valuation just because they can? Would they go all out for RB Leipzig midfielder Naby Keita, a player who seems to have become the object of complete obsession?

The Neymar deal will be one of the most seismic transfers ever seen, but the effect of it by the time the ripples potentially reach Liverpool will be particularly interesting to observe.

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