Football: Barca hoping Neymar nourishes Messi's magic
MADRID (AFP) - In contrast to previous seasons, Barcelona played their trump card in the transfer market early this year by securing the services of Brazilian starlet Neymar for 57 million euros (S$95.8 million) back in May.
The 21-year-old had been on the Catalans' radar for some time with Barca having even made a down payment of 10 million euros to Santos for first option on the player a year previously.
However, the confirmation of his transfer was hastened by the feeling that Barca needed to react quickly to having been thrashed 7-0 by Bayern Munich in last season's Champions League semi-finals.
Initial scepticism as to whether Barca really needed another forward option rather than a defender subsided after Neymar's stunning performances as Brazil won the Confederations Cup in June.