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SBD Global/December 11, 2013/International Football

Barcelona's Board 'Relaxed' Over Neymar Fee Case Regarding Last Summer's Signing

FC Barcelona’s board said that it is "relaxed" about a court case being taken by a club member to "clarify who exactly received the money paid to sign Neymar from Santos last summer," according to Dermot Corrigan of ESPN. The total fee paid for Neymar, and the destination of all the money spent by Barça, "remains unclear." Barça first claimed the fee was €57M, then €65M -- and [member] Jordi Cases now maintains that the total outlay was €74M. It "is widely thought" that €40M of the fee went to Neymar and his family as a "signing bonus." This has led to investors who "owned" a share of his "footballing rights" complaining that they "received less than expected, with legal action in Brazil also expected." Barça’s board maintains that the case, which will be heard by Spain’s Audiencia Nacional Court, "was unfortunate due to the negative publicity involved." Cases is a long-time critic of Barcelona President Sandro Rosell, a member of the "Grup d’Opinio Barca" and leader of the "Plataforma Consulta Qatar," which "attempted to block the club’s shirt sponsorship and other commercial deals with the Middle Eastern Emirate." He "was also a mover in ‘GO Barça’, another group of disgruntled socios [members], who tried and failed to mount a ‘motion of censure’ against Rosell last October" (ESPN, 12/10).
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