Barcelona striker Neymar set to join Paris St-Germain for £198m

BARCELONA, Spain – Brazil’s star footballer Neymar Jr. has been given permission by Barcelona to discuss a world record 222m euro (£198m) transfer with Paris St-Germain.

“The player, Neymar Jr, accompanied by his father and agent, has informed Barcelona this morning of his decision to leave the club in a meeting held at the club’s offices,” Barcelona wrote in a statement Wednesday.

He was then given permission by Barca manager Ernesto Valverde not to train and to “sort out his future”.

Paris St-Germain are desperate to sign the 25-year-old, and a deal is now likely to go through in the coming days.

The Spanish giants have confirmed Neymar can leave the club – but only if a club stump up his mammoth €222m (£198m) buyout clause.

The player won’t train until a transfer is either completed.

The 25-year-old’s contract has a release clause set at 222m euros, which PSG are understood to be ready to pay.

Neymar moved to Barcelona from Brazilian club Santos in 2013 for £48.6m, and signed a new five-year deal with the 24-time Spanish champions in 2016.

His representative Wagner Ribeiro, who on Wednesday tweeted he was in Paris, said last year that his client had been offered a tax-free £650,000 a week to sign for the French club.

He also said the forward “was close to a move to Manchester United”.