NEYMAR'S protracted summer return to Barcelona could be hijacked by fierce rivals Real Madrid, according to his former agent.
The Brazilian swapped the LaLiga giants for Paris Saint-Germain in a controversial £198million switch back in 2017.
Much of the last two seasons at the Parc des Princes, however, have been dominated by speculation surrounding the 28-year-old's apparent desire to return to the Camp Nou.
The Catalonians pushed hard to try and make it happen last summer, but having already spent big on Antoine Griezmann, club chiefs couldn't agree a package.
Barca are expected to try again for their former star, but struggling financially, could find themselves beaten by Madrid.
According to Wagner Ribeiro, the agent who helped arrange Neymar's previous controversial transfer from Santos to Barcelona, Madrid president Florentino Perez "dreams" of bringing his former client to the Bernabeu.
He told ESPN: "Neymar wanted Barcelona [when at Santos].
"I tried hard to take him to Real Madrid, I brought three of Real Madrid’s directors to Sao Paulo.
"They spent 15 days in my office with Neymar’s father, with Neymar, trying to sign him. But in the end, Neymar followed his heart; he wanted to play for Barcelona.
"Florentino dreams of signing Neymar. Last year, in May, I went to Florentino's office and he told me he still has this dream."
The forward enjoyed remarkable success at Barcelona, forming a deadly three-pronged attack dubbed the "MSN" alongside Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi.
In four years at the Camp Nou he scooped two league titles, three Copa del Reys and a Champions League triumph – scoring 105 goals in 186 appearances during this period.
Just prior to the coronavirus-induced suspension of football last month, Neymar had helped PSG past Dortmund into the Champions League qurter-finals – having been signed largely to help the Parisians win the competition for the first time.
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