La Liga president Javier Tebas says both Neymar and Cristiano Ronaldo are not as important to the league as Lionel Messi, though he added that he’d like to see the Paris Saint-Germain star return to Spain.
The Brazilian star’s future remains up in the air, with Thomas Tuchel stating on Sunday that he was uncertain what will occur with Neymar before the window closes next week.
And Tebas admitted that he would like to have Neymar back in Spain, wherever he ends up, but the presence of the Brazilian would not be as important as that of former team-mate Messi when it comes to growing the league’s popularity overseas.
“Yes, of course, “I’d like Neymar to return.” With his qualities, he’s in the top three players in the world. It would be very crucial for La Liga if he came again, in as much as it wouldn’t be defining for the Spanish league,” Tebas told Marca.
“The main thing is that we play 10 months a year, with 20 clubs each playing each other and creating passion and joy each weekend for fans in Spain and all over the world.
“A player like Neymar gives you a following in countries that care about him, but he’s not a crucial element, not even Cristiano Ronaldo was. Lionel Messi, on the other hand, is an important element due to he’s the heritage of La Liga.”
One of the problems troubling any team taking a bold step for Neymar would be Financial Fair Play, as the midfielder signed for the French club for a record-breaking €222 million (£200m/$249m) fee just two summers ago.
Regardless, Tebas stated that he agrees that those two clubs could afford a move for Neymar and can create a way to make the signing work.
“If they are eager to sign Neymar it’s due to they can afford it,” he said.
“I’m not going to go there as a result of many factors that we don’t know about at this point.”