Manchester City rejected the opportunity to sign Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar in the ending stages of the summer transfer window, according to reports in Spain. Neymar was strongly linked with a move to the Premier League this summer, with Chelsea also being considered as a possible destination for the Brazil international. But a transfer failed to happen for Neymar before the window was shut for English clubs on Thursday night.
According to Spanish publication Marca, City were given a chance to sign Neymar late in the window but turned down the opportunity. It is believed that PSG were willing to sell the Brazilian, despite his remarkable start to the new season due to his recent clash with the star forward Kylian Mbappe.
The report claims that City had no intention of undertaking a signing of such dimensions and with possible effects on the dressing room and the team’s operation, despite the quality of the player. Meanwhile, another Spanish outlet SPORT has claimed that City boss Pep Guardiola ‘emphatically declined’ the proposal as it would possibly harm the dressing room environment.
As per some reports, Neymar has caused ‘tension’ at PSG, most notably with Mbappe. Questions have been raised over whether the pair can peacefully co-exist in the same team, with the issue of penalties once again seen in recent weeks.
Despite head coach Christophe Galtier confirming that Mbappe is the No. 1 penalty taker this season, Neymar refused to let the France international take a second spot kick against Montpellier last month after he had already missed one in the match.
According to ESPN, Mbappe was dejected after Neymar took the ball for the second penalty and refused to allow him another opportunity to score. It is not the first time Neymar has clashed with a teammate over penalties while at PSG, as he was also involved in a similar incident with Edinson Cavani during the 2017-18 season.
Mbappe has seen his influence grow at PSG since signing a record-breaking three-year deal in May, which sees him earn a reported £1m per week at the Parc des Princes. Neymar, meanwhile, remains the most expensive player in history, having moved from Barcelona to PSG in a £198m transfer in 2017. He has gone on to score 109 goals in 150 games for the French champions and remains under contract with the club until 2025.