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Don’t expect Neymar to move in January

Dec 27, 2012, 9:45 AM EST

Peru Copa Libertadores

With the European transfer window opening next week, the time for cynicism is here. Over the next month-plus, you’re going to be inundated with gossip and speculation, most of which you should scoff at and discard.

While we’ll try to refrain from posting the completely frivolous junk, but when something gets sufficient backing (like here, or here), the rumors will even make their way onto the prestige papers of ProSoccerTalk.

That’s why it brings me some perverse joy to begin our transfer coverage by squashing some rumors. Yesterday, we talked about Daniele de Rossi’s unlikely move to Major League Soccer (anytime soon). Today, we’ll put any PST Neymar speculation to bed before transfer season even start.

On Wendesday, the Santos and Brazil national team star confirmed on Brazilian television that he will not move in the January window. Citing his “family, son, [and] friends,” the 20-year-old said he was too happy at home to entertain a move in the winter window.

The announcement comes after recent speculation Manchester City had intensified their pursuit of South America’s best player. Reports had City director Txiki Begiristain flying to Brazil in an effort to convince Neymar to sign for the Premier League club.

If City is in contention for Neymar, Begiristain is likely competing against his former club, with Barcelona long thought to be the favorite to sign the Brazilian if he decides to leave Santos.

While Neymar’s decision to stay at home surprised few, it does set him up for another precarious Brazilian league season. Since becoming a regular with the Selecao, Neymar’s international commitments have kept him from getting regular time in Brazil’s Campeonato. After playing 31 league games in 2010, Neymar has appeared a combined 38 times in the last two tournaments. In 2012, Neymar made nearly as many appearances in the São Paulo state championship (16) as he did in the national league (17).

By electing to stay in Brazil, Neymar’s set himself up for another year of reduced playing time. South America’s World Cup qualifying campaign will pull Neymar into the national team during the Campeonato’s summer schedule. Neymar will also miss time for Confederations Cup, in which Brazil will participate as World Cup hosts.

Those playing time concerns don’t seem to be weighing on the Santos star. Already dominating his competition to the tune of 43 goals in 47 games in 2012, Neymar’s probably ready to jump to Europe, but if a 20-year-old star making millions at home wants to stick around for a little longer, it’s hard to find too much fault. Were he 22 or 23 and entering the best years of his career, it would be easier to argue he should be in Europe.

But if he waits until after the next World Cup to make the jump (as has often been speculated), Neymar may be no worse off.

  1. capsfan19 - Dec 27, 2012 at 9:53 AM

    He would get man handled in premier. There would also be alot more criticism about his diving

  2. profootballcaulk - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:31 AM

    Brother, you read my thoughts exactly! He is a La Liga player if I’ve ever seen one. Can u see chime in the box going for a header next to John Terry? Demba Ba? Ryan Giggs? Neymar would be crippled or at least appear so writhing on the ground.
    His best local chance would be if robinho came back to Santos. But every time a star player comes along for Santos he gets emotionally bruised. Elano, where is he now? Gremio who came up with a wonderful Brasilerao. Borges, where is he now? Cruzeiro where he scored 11 in a dozen or so games but about 45 in about 50 league matches… this kid is the proverbial diva and caveat emptor to whichever Euro tea Mays his fees.
    In 20 years we’ll say remember Beckham, Messi, Ronaldo, Ronaldo Fenomeno but no mention of Neymar… I truly hope he proves me wrong!

  3. charliej11 - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:47 AM

    It is funny on these articles, Richard you are about the only one to mention it, but even you are barely mention it.

    It is ALWAYS about the money. ALWAYS. I looked it up. He is making $10.5 million a year. Messi makes under $17 million. How much more does anyone thinking he should move think Europe is paying ?

    Stay at home dude. If they offer Messi money, consider it. Moving to Europe for an extra $1 million, give me a break he isn’t going to do that.

    I bet his endorsements being in Brazil far exceed what increase in salary Europe is offering.
    Who does that remind you of ? I will give you a hint it starts with L and has a D in there too…..

  4. profootballcaulk - Dec 27, 2012 at 12:03 PM

    I believe he made equivalent of 29usd for 2012. He has supposedly six paychecks for his salary from Santos with the players representation group or Union owning some his rights… weird huh?
    Of all this money I can’t say how much is salary or endorsements. Remember when Beckham signed for MLS? There was a sponsor paying a portion of the fees and salary that he got to play here…

    • charliej11 - Dec 27, 2012 at 12:34 PM

      29 million ! And he is a lock to start for the national team….So now what is Man City going to offer him ?

      Yeah, become one of the players in our giant pool, if you are in favor you will play, if not sorry about the $15 million paycut while you warm the bench.

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