This article is written by George. Check him out on Twitter @georjecb.
After allowing the news that Neymar has officially signed for PSG sink in for a day or so, I’ve decided to give my thoughts on the signing.
Although many people have expressed how disappointed they are in Neymar for leaving Barcelona, I actually think it’s a very wise choice on his part. In my humble opinion, if Neymar had stayed at FC Barcelona for his entire career he’d be second to Messi in the history books. Not only would Barcelona fans glorify Messi more so than his ex-teammate, but also the football world in general will look back at this generation and call Messi the greatest. No matter how you look at it, Messi would always have been number one.
At PSG Neymar has a chance to become his own person. He’ll no longer be attached to MSN and will be able to show the world what he's capable of doing on his own. Obviously PSG have an outstanding squad, however, here Neymar is able to be the main man whereas at Barcelona that role was already taken by Lionel Messi.
Critics will be far harsher towards Neymar at PSG than they were before, not only because of his astronomical transfer fee, but also because he will be playing in the French league – where the standard is lower than La Liga. In terms of goals and assists, Neymar will have to go above and beyond any other player on the planet for him to even be considered as a potential Ballon d’Or winner – an award that I believe he is more than capable of winning.
Neymar also has the opportunity to lead a side to Champions League glory. I know he’s already won this competition before with Barcelona, but now he has the chance to do it with a team who are historically far less successful. If he manages to win the UCL with PSG (for the first time in their history) it will have a lot more of an influence on his legacy than if he were to simply just win it for a second time with Barcelona.
The final aspect of this transfer is, of course, the money. The fee Barcelona received for Neymar was in the region of £200m. This completely demolishes the previous world-record fee that was set last year when Manchester United signed Paul Pogba for £89m. Although PSG are notorious for being a club with a lot of money to throw around, a figure like this is extraordinary even by their standards. I think this transfer has paved the way for even more ridiculous transfers to take place in the future. Kylian Mbappe is coming through the ranks at Monaco and it’s only a matter of time before he is sold to one of Europe’s elite clubs. How much would he be worth? £150 million? £200 million? More...?
I honestly do believe this transfer will be remembered as one of the biggest moments in football history. Neymar signing for PSG means we'll be able to see how he'll develop on his own (without being in Messi’s shadow). He has the opportunity to prove himself and perhaps even stake a claim for why he should be remembered as one of football’s greatest ever players. On top of that, as I wrote earlier, financially speaking this move has changed everything.
Those are my pretty much all of my thoughts on the matter. If you disagree with anything I’ve written or would like to continue the conversation, get in touch with us on Twitter @socabol – I will personally reply to everyone! Thanks.
Written by George (@georjecb)