Real Madrid had Brazilian playmaker, Neymar Jnr close to a transfer to Los Blancos but ultimately could not cross the finish line, according to the club’s long-time boss.
Real Madrid president, Florentino Perez has claimed Neymar completed a medical at the Bernabeu before the Brazilian sealed a switch to rivals Barcelona.
“Neymar passed a medical with Madrid. We tried for him to come, but we saw at one point that it was not possible and we withdrew (from the deal),” Perez told Onda Cero.
Instead, Perez sanctioned a then-world record deal with Tottenham for Gareth Bale. The Welshman’s fee of £85m has since been smashed by Manchester United’s £89.3m swoop for Paul Pogba from Juventus – with speculation fervent that the record could be blown again this summer.
The Welsh attacker’s move to Madrid late in the transfer window followed high-profile moves of Sergio Ramos (2005) and Luka Modric (2012) that came in just under the wire at the end of the summer.
It’s why Perez isn’t too worried about the lack of movement at Santiago Bernabeu so far during this transfer window.
“I like the market all the way until August 31. There’s a long way to go,” he said.
As for Bale, Perez said that he wasn’t disappointed with the 27-year-old’s lack of production in an injury-ravaged campaign.
Overall, Perez said, the club’s brass are happy with their investment in the Welsh attacker. “Bale’s tendons went,” he said. “He had bad luck this season, but he has given us much satisfaction.”
Perez also confirmed that the club are following Milan goalkeeper, Gianluigi Donnarumma.
The 18-year-old has rejected a new contract with the Rossoneri, and despite suggestions last night that talks could be re-opened, he’s expected to leave the club this summer.
Real Madrid has been touted as his most likely destination, and it appears Los Merengues are indeed interested, with Peres telling Radio Onda Cero:
“Everyone in the world says he’s a great player, who will replace [Gigi] Buffon in the national team. That he’s one with great quality. The whole world is telling me. We’re definitely following him, but I can’t tell you everything we’ll do.”