Neymar says he will fight a claim by Barcelona for compensation following his move to Paris Saint-Germain.
The Brazilian insists he will also challenge his former club over an unpaid loyalty bonus, with Barcelona refusing to pay a £23m bonus to Neymar’s father following a contract renewal last year. FIFA are investigating the 25-year-old’s complaint.
The forward left the Nou Camp this summer to join PSG for a world-record £198m but the Spanish club said on Tuesday they were pursuing £7.8m in damages from Neymar for what they allege to be a “breach of contract”.
Neymar and his lawyers released a joint statement, quoted in the Spanish media, which read: “We inform everyone that Neymar and his lawyers are aware of the news released today regarding the legal actions filed by FC Barcelona before the courts of Barcelona.
“Following official notification and after full review of the club’s claim, the player’s formal defence will be filed in due course.
“Regarding the bonuses owed for the execution of the contract of 2016, it is also necessary to inform that the player has already initiated the formal procedures of collection before the competent courts.”
Barcelona’s demand appears to relate to a payment made to Neymar when, in 2016, he renewed his contract with the club through to 2021. It was sent to the Spanish football federation on August 11 with a wish for it to be forwarded to the French federation and FIFA.
“Barcelona decided to take these actions in defence of their interests, after a unilateral termination of contract urged by Neymar Jr a few months after signing the renewal until the end of the year 2021,” a statement read.
In response PSG said they were “surprised” by Barcelona’s statement, adding: “The club repeats that, along with Neymar Jr, it strictly respected all applicable laws and rules and can only regret, once again, the attitude of FC Barcelona.”
On Monday Neymar said Barcelona deserved “much more” than the current board of directors and added that it made him “very sad”.