Brazilian soccer star Neymar who completed a world record 222 million euros ($264 million) transfer from Barcelona to PSG appeared in his first press conference in Paris and declared the move was “one of the most difficult decisions” of his life.
The former Barcelona striker said, “I thank all my teammates at Barca for their friendship. I was very happy there for four years but I felt it was time to move on.”
“It was a tense time, thinking about what I should do in my life. I have left behind a lot of friends, but things go very fast in football,” he said.
“In Barcelona, I had adapted well to the city and the team. I had friends there and it has not been easy,” the 25-year-old Brazil superstar admitted at PSG’s Parc des Princes press conference.
Neymar’s move would mean he would earn nearly 30 million euros net per year at PSG, but he said he followed his heart while making the decision to play for PSG.
“I have never been motivated by money. I always follow my heart. I regret that people think that and I thank PSG for believing in my potential,” he said.
PSG are set to host newly promoted Amiens at the Parc des Princes on the opening day of the new Ligue 1 season, and Neymar declared he was ready to take up the challenge on Day-1 of the season.
“I always want to play, so I am ready to do so tomorrow. I have trained in pre-season. I stopped for two days, but I am ready, I’ve seen the pitch and I want to put the PSG shirt on and play.”
When asked about supporters feelings who felt the Brazilian “betrayed” them, Neymar said: “At no point did I lack respect to the supporters or the club.”
PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi who accompanied Neymar at the press conference said the world record transfer fee of $264million will more than double within two years.
“There are not two Neymars in the world. I would love for us to meet in two years and see what his value will be compared to today. At least the double.”