Neymar, who only left the Spanish champions in 2017 for a world-record £198m, is tipped to make his return to Catalonia in the coming weeks.
Real Madrid had expressed a deep desire to sign the Brazilian, though it is understood that he would prefer a move back to Barcelona – the club where he scored over 100 goals during a four-year spell between 2013-2017.
Barcelona have already had a bid of €60m plus Philippe Coutinho rejected by the Ligue 1 champions, but are expected to return with an improved offer soon in order to secure their former employee.
That proposed offer will likely include 25-year-old defender Nelson Semedo, plus a substantial cash sum, which would be lowered if a season-long loan for winger Ousmane Dembele was also included as part of the deal – something that has been mentioned, according to Sports Mole.
Having lost Dani Alves in the summer, Thomas Tuchel is on the lookout for someone to fill the right-back berth so is thought to be interested in striking a deal for the Portugal international.
Semedo made 46 appearances for Barca in all competitions last season, showing real signs of progression under manager Ernesto Valverde. He featured for the full 90 in the Catalans disappointing opening day defeat against Athletic Bilbao on Friday night, which suggests that Valverde does view him as his first-choice right-back this season.
However, Barcelona still have the accomplished Sergi Roberto available to them in that position, so if it came to it would probably be happy to lose Semedo if it meant sealing a move for Neymar.
Indeed, while Roberto can also operate in central midfield, Transfermarkt report that 115 of his career appearances have come as a full-back. Interestingly – according to WhoScored – the Spaniard averaged more tackles than Semedo did in the 2018/19 campaign (2.1 to 1.5) during his last full season (2017/18) in the defensive berth. So, the Blaugrana might not actually be losing too much if Semedo can be used as some kind of collateral.
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