Barcelona has denied any wrongdoing over the transfer of Brazilian international Neymar, and are prepared to “defend its interests” in court.
On Wednesday there were reports that a public prosecutor had called for an investigation into whether the Spanish champions misled the treasury. Bloomberg have cited a document filed in Madrid’s National Court saying that the Catalan club paid Neymar $13.7m in 2011 and $38.4m in 2013 as incentives to leave his then-club, Santos.
The prosecutor who filed the document, Jose Perals, has also claimed that Barcelona performed “financial engineering” by drawing up nine contracts as parts of the transfer.
Barcelona responded in a statement (via SportBusiness International):
“The club’s dealings with respect to this operation, and in light of all information available, was at all times in line with the relevant legal legislation. Represented by its lawyers, the club will appear at the Jutjat Central d’Instrucció number five within the next few days in order to defend its interests and rights. We express our total willingness to collaborate with the justice authorities in this matter, as we have done since the first moment the issue arose and in any other area in which our presence may be required.”
Last month the club announced the transfer cost $118m, almost $41m more than the originally announced fee. Following a legal challenge from club member Jordi Cases, state prosecutors said they would investigate the deal – with Barcelona president Sandro Rosell resigning after the scandal broke.