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European football

Spain’s La Liga rejects Neymar payment over PSG move

Spanish media say La Liga officials believe PSG are violating Uefa's Financial Fair Play rules

Spain’s La Liga on Thursday rejected payment of a record-breaking release clause that would allow Neymar to leave Barcelona for Paris St Germain, a source from the national football league said.

A group of lawyers representing Brazilian Neymar visited La Liga in Madrid on Thursday to try to settle the transfer and pay the 222 million euro break fee.

It was not immediately clear whether La Liga’s refusal to accept payment would put the brakes on the transfer.

PSG’s president Nasser al-Khelaifi declined to comment when asked about the latest development during a visit to a children’s holiday camp outside Paris where France president Emmanuel Macron was also in attendance.

“I’m here today on behalf of PSG’s foundation,” Qatari businessman al-Khelaifi said.

Spain’s Marca newspaper reported that Neymar and his advisers would turn to Fifa, world football’s governing body, requesting a provisional transfer to PSG.

The striker’s agent Wagner Ribeiro had said on Wednesday that the French club was ready to foot the bill so that Neymar could be presented at PSG at the weekend.

La Liga president, Javier Tebas, had already warned in an interview that Spain’s league would not accept payment by PSG to trigger the release clause, saying it was potentially in breach of Uefa Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules.

Under the those rules, a club’s wage bill must not exceed 70 per cent of its revenue.

Uefa, European football’s governing body, told Reuters on Wednesday that had been no complaint received so far about PSG in this respect, adding that it would not block any potential deal in advance.

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