Santos star Neymar was set to leave the club to join Chelsea in the Premier League, but the club’s president now hopes his highly sought after player could stay in his native Brazil beyond 2014.
The world class talent was linked away from South America with a summer switch to London, and other rumours circulated suggesting Barcelona had arranged a deal to bring him to La Liga.
But Luis Alvaro de Oliveira Ribeiro, the Santos president, believes it’s now a reality for Neymar to stay with his club, not just for the remainder of his current deal which takes him to 2014, but even further beyond that.
“When I met the lawyers and his agent, it was almost certain he would be sold to Chelsea but I left an empty seat in the meeting,” said the Santos president.
“I said that the last one that sat there was Ayrton Senna, the last Brazilian idol. And that Neymar could be the next one.
“Nowadays Neymar sits there and he needs to stay happy in the place where he is happy. I believe he will stay even beyond 2014”.