La Liga President Javier Tebas, has said that both Neymar and Cristiano Ronaldo are not as important to the league as Lionel Messi, though he added that he would like to see the Paris Saint-Germain star return to Spain.
Neymar has been linked with a move back to the Spanish top tier all summer, having now missed all of PSG’s first three games of the Ligue 1 campaign.
A return to Barcelona was widely seen as a possibility, especially with the division champions offloading Philippe Coutinho, while Real Madrid has also been linked with their former rival.
The Brazilian star’s future remains up in the air, with Thomas Tuchel stating on Sunday that he was unsure what will happen with Neymar before the window shuts next week.
And Tebas admitted that he would like to have Neymar back in Spain, wherever he ends up, but the presence of the Brazilian would not be as vital as that of former team-mate Messi when it comes to growing the league’s popularity overseas.
“Yes, of course [I’d like Neymar to return]. With his qualities he’s in the top three players in the world. It would be very important for La Liga if he came again, although it wouldn’t be defining for the Spanish league,” Tebas told Tidesports source.
“The defining thing is that we play 10 months a year, with 20 clubs each playing each other and generating passion and joy each weekend for fans in Spain and across the world.
“A player like Neymar gives you a following in countries that look out for him, but he’s not an essential element, not even Cristiano Ronaldo was. Lionel Messi, on the other hand, is an essential element because he’s the heritage of La Liga.”
One of the issues facing any team making a move for Neymar would be Financial Fair Play, as the midfielder signed for the French club for a record-breaking €222 million (£200m/$249m) fee just two summers ago.
Barcelona has already brought in the likes of Antoine Griezmann and Frenkie de Jong, while Real Madrid’s summer spending spree has included acquisitions in the form of Eden Hazard, Luka Jovic, Ferland Mendy, Eder Militao and Rodrygo.
Still, Tebas says that he believes those two clubs could afford a move for Neymar and can find a way to make the signing work.
“If they are interested in signing [Neymar] it’s because they can [afford] it,” he said.
“I’m not going to go there because there are many factors that we don’t know about at the moment.”
CAF CL: Why Akwa United Struggled Against CR Belouizdad
Coach Kennedy Boboye admitted that Akwa United failed in their bid to replace the players that left the club.
Boboye revealed this in his post match confe-rence after Akwa United kick-started their 2021-2022 CAF Champions League campaign with a 1-0 win over CR Belouizdad of Algeria on Sunday.
The Promise Keepers lost influential stars like Charles Atshimene and Olisa Ndah to CD Feirense of Portugal and Orlando Pirates of South Africa respectively earlier this month.
Recall that Ndah and Atshimene played key role in Akwa United’s NPFL title victory and Boboye admitted that the club was unable to bring in replacement.
He said: “This is what we have gotten. Most of the players we tried to get did not come.”
“We can’t stop players from travelling. It is unfortunate that we started the tournament very early.”
“We have not been able to play together for a long time. By the time we surpass this stage, we would be better than before,” he said.
Remo Stars To Appoint Ogunbote Head Coach
Nigeria Professional Football League New Boys, Remo Stars are on the verge of appointing Gbenga Ogunbote as their new coach.
Reports revealed that Remo Stars manage-ment will appoint the former Enyimba and Sunshine Stars boss to take over the reign from Daniel Ogunbodede who tutored the team last season.
Ogunbote was spot-ted with the Ikenne-based club during the just concluded NNL Super 8 in Enugu.
The club is set to announce the mana-gerial change in the coming days, but nothing has been heard, concerning the future of Daniel Ogunbodede.
Ogunbodede helped Remo Stars seal their return to the elite division after finishing second in NNL playoff in Group A.
CAFCL: Eguma Warns Players Against Complacency
Rivers United Coach, Stanley Eguma, has warned his players against comp-lacency ahead of their CAF Champions Lea-gue second leg prelimi-nary game against Young Africans.
The Pride of Rivers defeated the Tanzanian side 1-0 at the Benjamin Mkapa Nat-ional Stadium on Sunday.
Samuel Omodumuke scored the winning goal for the visitors in the 52nd minute to give the Eguma’s side advant-age of going to the next game.
The return leg will take place next week Sunday at the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium, Port Harcourt.
Speaking ahead of the second meeting, Eguma hinted that his players need to forget about the first leg result and approach the second leg with all seriousness.
“They are a good side and have mobile players.
“We need to have the right mentality when we play them at home, we must not relent and fight as if we have not played the first leg.
“We must put in everything in the second leg, that is going to be our approach.”
“The players need to rise to the occasion to ensure that we seal the qualification,” he said.
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