Neymar transfer news: PSG to take action as Barcelona & Real Madrid-linked Brazil star absent from pre-season training

A statement released by the Ligue 1 champions condemns the Brazilian, but his father has disputed the club’s claims

Paris Saint-Germain have vowed to take action after Neymar failed to report to pre-season training, the club announced on Monday, though the soccer professional’s father claims the Parisian side were made aware of the delay a year ago.

The Ligue 1 champions said they had previously reached an agreement on where and when Neymar would report to training, and the Brazil star failed to arrive while not receiving authorisation for his absence.

As a result the 27-year-old star, who missed the Copa America with Brazil due to injury, faces a rebuke and possible disciplinary action from PSG, who, in a statement, “deplores this situation”.

An official note reads: “This Monday, July 8, Neymar da Silva Santos Junior was summoned for the resumption of activities of the professional group of Paris Saint-Germain.

“Paris Saint-Germain found that the soccer professional Neymar Jr did not show up at the agreed time and place, without having been authorized by the Club in advance.

“Paris Saint-Germain deplores this situation and will take the appropriate measures resulting from it.”

Hours later, Neymar Sr. spoke to Fox Brazil, stating that the club knew a year ago that he would not return until July 15 due to commitments with his foundation, Instituto Neymar.

“The reason [for the delay] has been known,” he said. “It was scheduled a year ago, with Instituto Neymar, and we couldn’t change it. He will be there on 15th [of July]. Simple as that, no big deal. PSG has been aware and participate in Instituto Neymar activities.”

The drama has been the latest in a tumultuous summer for the Brazil star as talk of a possible exit from the Ligue 1 champions has grown louder.

In June, PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi had choice words for Neymar, declaring “nobody forced him to sign” with the club for a world-record €222 million (£200m/$262m) fee in 2017.

Al-Khelaifi added that he wanted “players willing to give everything to defend the honour of the jersey and to join the club project”, further fueling talk Neymar could be headed for a summer exit after the PSG president had declared  “nothing and nobody has been bigger than the club” in May.

Neymar, who remains signed through to 2022, has been heavily linked with a La Liga return, either with Real Madrid or a reunion with Barcelona, with Goal previously reporting he remains a top target for the Catalan club.

However, when asked about the Neymar situation last week during the presentation of new signing Frenkie de Jong, Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu appeared to admit defeat in the club’s attempts to re-sign the attacker, citing a PSG’s reluctance to sell despite the soccer professional’s desire to leave.

“We know that [Neymar] wants to leave PSG, we know that, but we also know PSG do not want him to go. There has been no way,” Bartomeu said at a press conference July 5.

When healthy, Neymar’s two seasons have been productive as he has scored 34 goals and added 20 assists in 37 Ligue 1 games for the club.

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But injuries have been an issue, with a broken foot in both seasons causing him to miss extended time, including the second leg of the Champions League last-16 against Real Madrid in 2018 and the entire tie in the same round against Manchester United in 2019.

PSG went on to lose both ties, continuing European struggles that have dampened domestic dominance that has seen the club capture six of the past seven Ligue 1 titles.

Neymar recovered from injury in time for the Copa America, but a subsequent ankle injury sidelined him for the tournament, as Brazil went on to break a 12-year drought in competition, defeating Peru on Sunday to claim the title in his absence.

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