Paris Saint-Germain boss Unai Emery claims that the Ligue 1 giants are trying to sign one of the world's top-five best footballers as rumours regarding possible swoops for Barcelona star Neymar and Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez continue to gain considerable traction.
Brazilian outlet Esporte Interativo made a considerable splash earlier this week by sensationally claiming that Neymar had agreed to join PSG and that a transfer could be concluded within two weeks.
It has been said that the cash-rich Parisians are willing to pay the eye-watering €222m (£197.3m, $255.4m) sum that it would take to trigger the player's release clause as it currently stands in the second year of a new long-term contract signed in October 2016. It is scheduled to rise further to €250m for the final 36 months of a five-year deal.
Reports suggest that Neymar is eager to escape from the considerable shadow of Lionel Messi at the Nou Camp, although Barcelona vice-president Jordi Mestre says he is "200 per cent sure" that the 25-year-old will remain in Catalonia next season.
PSG have also been linked closely with the likes of Gunners contract rebel Sanchez and AS Monaco wonderkid Kylian Mbappe over recent weeks. Emery, during an interview with French daily L'Equipe, confirmed that the deposed Ligue 1 champions were aiming big as they look to compete on Europe's biggest stage.
"PSG wants the best players in the world, who are in the best clubs in the world," he said, as per The Mirror. "If we want to compete with Bayern Munich, Barcelona, Real Madrid and win the Champions League, then PSG must have a player of the world top five. We are trying to get one signed this summer.
"Neymar belongs to the top five in the world. The president and the club have been working for years to attract the best players. The team, but also the fans, would be glad that there is a top five, six or seven player in addition to the already strong ones who are here. This quest is not easy. Maybe we'll get there, maybe not."
Despite those firm public denials from Barcelona, new reports from Globo Esporte claim that Neymar has already informed PSG's strong Brazilian contingent - comprised of former Blaugrana teammate Dani Alves, Thiago Silva, Marquinhos and Lucas Moura - that he will join them at the Parc des Princes in 2017-18.
Silva subsequently expressed hope that a deal could be completed, although insisted he did not know much about it. Marquinhos, meanwhile, described his compatriot as an "exceptional player" that would help PSG a lot but also appeared to quash suggestions that the group had already been told in advance.
Addressing his future amid that raging speculation this week, Neymar insisted that he was happy to stay at Barcelona following his best individual season and was "very adapted" to both the city and the club. Los Cules spokesman Josep Vives also insisted that "selling Neymar is not something the club would think about".