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Santos rubbish Neymar to Barca rumours; Simao free to leave Espanyol

Brasileirão club Santos FC have released an official statement denying speculation that the club have agreed to sell Neymar to FC Barcelona, Sky Sports understands.

Sport, a Spanish newspaper based in Barcelona, initially reported that Santos and Barcelona had an agreement set in place that would bring the 20-year-old Brazilian ace to the Camp Nou, but the Brazilian outfit quickly denied the newspaper reports.

“Santos FC denies any possibility of selling Neymar to Barcelona or any other club,” the club’s official statement read.

“There are no ongoing negotiations.

“The club reaffirm that Neymar has a contract until 2014 and will see it out.”

Neymar, the 2011 South American Footballer of the Year, is arguably the most coveted footballer on the planet at the moment, and rightfully so.

Santos’ ace has bagged 49 goals in 98 league appearances for the club, while adding 16 goals in 25 international caps for the Seleção.

He has been linked with the likes of Chelsea, FC Barcelona and Real Madrid in the past, but you could probably add upcoming French powerhouse Paris Saint-Germain to that list.

Les Parisiens already have a deal in place that will bring 20-year-old Brazil international Lucas Moura to the Parc des Princes in January.

Simao free to leave Espanyol

Espanyol manager Mauricio Pochettino has given Simao Sabrosa the green light to quit the club after leaving the Portuguese out of Saturday’s match-day squad against Malaga CF, Sky Sports reports.

The former Portugal has seemingly been out-of-favour with Pochettino since day one, having featured in just three league matches for struggling Espanyol, 1-3-5 (18th place), this season.

Simao, 32, could leave the club in January despite signing on with the Blanquiblaus this past summer, and by the looks of the club’s potential fate, he should leave and never look back.

One thing we do know is that the club’s boss Mauricio Pochettino will not stand in his way, should he decide to move on in favour of pastures new.

“Anyone that does not like it or does not want to be part of the dynamic and discipline then they know full well that the doors are open for them, whoever they may be,” insisted Pochettino.

Lugano wants January move, more playing time

In other news, Paris Saint-Germain centre-back Diego Lugano has revealed that he will be looking for a new club when the transfer window re-opens in January, citing lack of playing time as the main reason for his desired switch.

PSG boss Carlo Ancelotti has preferred the centre-back pairing of Alex and new arrival Thiago Silva, leaving Lugano out-of-favour, to the tune of one start out of the club’s eight league matches.

“In January I’ll try to move to a team where I can play more often,” Lugano told Radio 22 Universal.

“But if they (PSG) decide not to let me go, I won’t be opposed to the idea.”

Sat 27 October, 2012
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