Neymar is officially headed to Paris Saint-Germain after a long, drawn-out transfer saga that will conclude with the Brazilian as the most expensive soccer player ever.
Here’s is the full translation of the text:
“The life of an athlete is moved by challenges. Some are imposed, others are the result of our decisions.
Barcelona has been more than a challenge. I played with those stars in the video game. I arrived in Catalonia at 21, full of challenges. I remember my first days at the Club, sharing the locker room with idols like Messi, Valdés, Xavi, Iniesta, Puyol, Piqué, Busquets and others with the expectation of playing at a Club that is “more than a club”. FC Barcelona is a nation that represents Catalonia!
I had the honor of performing with the greatest athlete I’ve ever seen in my life and I’m sure I will not see a better one, Lionel Messi became my partner, friend on and off the pitch. Proud to play with you.
I formed an attack with Messi and Luis Suarez that is left for history. I have conquered everything an athlete can conquer. I have lived unforgettable moments! I live in a city that is more than a city, it is a homeland. I love Barcelona and Catalonia.
But an athlete (I) needs challenges.
And for the second time in my life I will contradict my father.
Papa, I understand and respect your opinion, but my decision is made, I ask you to support me as you have always done.
FC Barcelona and Catalonia will always be in my heart but I need new challenges.
I have accepted the proposal of PSG to search for new achievements and help the Club win the titles that the fans expect. They have presented me with a daring career plan and I am prepared for this challenge.
I appreciate the affection of the Blaugrana fans and all that I have learned from the athletes with whom I have shared the locker room.
I also feel in my heart that the time has come to leave. PSG will be my new home for the coming years and I will work to honor the confidence they put in my football. I count on the support of all. Fans, of my friends, of the professionals who accompany me and of my family, who has suffered a lot with problems that have occurred in this period of my career and deserve peace.
It is a difficult decision, but taken with the maturity of my 25 years.
FC Barcelona, thanks for everything!
PSG, I arrive!
May God bless and protect us!”
Neymar spent four seasons at Barcelona. He joined from Brazilian club Santos in 2013, and amassed 105 goals over 186 appearances in all competitions. He helped lead Barcelona to two La Liga crowns and a Champions League title. The MSN trio — Messi, Suarez and Neymar — was undoubtedly the greatest three-man attacking partnership of its generation, and one of the most prolific in the history of soccer.
With Neymar gone, Barcelona must replenish a squad that suddenly looks somewhat vulnerable to decline.