Neymar denies 222 million euro transfer was motivated by money Reuters

FC Barcelona forward and Argentine legend Lionel Messi revealed in a recent interview that his former teammate and current Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar Jr. was desperate to return to Barcelona earlier this season. The South American icon also expressed his doubts on whether his club fully tried to make the Brazilian's comeback possible.

Messi said, "He was desperate to come back. I don't know if the club really tried or not." He further said that he would have been the happiest person if Neymar returned to Camp Nou. The Barca forward claimed that there are some people who are against Neymar's return. However, the Argentine seems to understand their perspective, given the way this Brazilian striker left Barca for PSG in 2017.

As reported by the BBC, Messi thinks Neymar is among the best players in the modern-day football world. He also said that his side would have had an extra edge over other European teams if the most sought after MSN trio reunited this season at Camp Nou.

Neymar and Messi
Messi and Neymar Getty

When asked whether he and his teammates forced their club to seal the Neymar deal at all costs, Messi dismissed the rumours. He revealed that the team players gave their opinion on whether the Neymar deal was worth it for Barca. However, they didn't force the club bosses in this regard.

The Ligue 1 champions bought Neymar from Barcelona in a deal worth €222 million in 2017. Before that, the Brazilian forward played for the defending La Liga champions between 2013 and 2017. During this period, he scored 105 goals in 186 matches. After moving to PSG, he appeared in 58 matches so far and scored 51 times.

Recently, there were speculations regarding Messi's possible exit from the Catalan side next season. When asked about his transfer intentions, the 32-year old cleared the air by claiming that Camp Nou is his home and he would love to stay at Barcelona as long as his fitness permits him to don their jersey and win tournaments for the club.

The Argentine joined Barca in 2001 and since then, he has been an integral part of the club. His present contract with the Spanish side expires in 2021.