Leo Messi y Josep Maria Bartomeu tras la última renovación del argentino en 2017

Neymar and that meeting at Messi's house

OPINION

Barcelona's defeat at Liverpool should never have happened. That defeat hit the club hard and the fans were very vocal on social media after the game. No one, apart from Lionel Messi, was spared. Ernesto Valverde was first in the firing line. Josep Maria Bartomeu, a master at calming down thee storms, made his move 11 days later, going to Messi's house and looking for the dressing room's view. 

That meeting at Messi's house defined the strategy to follow. Valverde's well liked by the player, so he stayed on. Signings: The players like Neymar and Leo let the president know that bringing him back would be well received, given the trident has not been as effective since losing the Brazilian. They also spoke about Antoine Griezmann. The players don't want him. Bartomeu left with a plan and even though they lost to Valencia in the Copa del Rey a week later, the plan didn't change: Valverde backed and Neymar on the menu. Now, more on the menu than ever. 

It's not easy to keep thinking about Neymar. Since that meeting at Messi's house, the Brazilian has been accused of rape, has got injured again and is not fit for the Copa America. His image is on the floor, although that has contributed to Paris Saint-Germain becoming fed up of their star player's baggage. They don't want him, a transfer is possible, but Barcelona would have deal with that baggage. But Messi's backing means a lot. 

Luis Suarez pointed out as much from the Uruguay camp in Brazil: "Who would not want to play with Neymar?" And he wouldn't offer his opinion on Griezmann. That's how it is. The doors are open to Neymar but not at any price. A good solution would be to place Philippe Coutinho at PSG. It makes no sense for him to remain at Camp Nou if Neymar comes back. If Ney comes back for 100 million less than he left, it would not be a bad deal. At the end of the day, Messi wants him and it's now about supporting Messi for the three of four years he has left at the top level. It's the intelligent thing to do. Or, at least, the safest. 

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