Brazil legend Rivaldo believes that Paris Saint-Germain superstar Neymar has to apologise to Barcelona fans if he wants to return to the Camp Nou this summer.
The 27-year-old has been this summer transfer window’s hottest topic as he appears to push for a move back to Catalonia, just two years on from his world record €222m switch to the French capital.
But club legend Rivaldo, who made 236 appearances for Barcelona, has urged his compatriot to admit that “he was wrong” to leave if he wants to get the fans back on side.
“It’s a difficult decision,” Rivaldo told Goal. “It’s difficult because of the way Neymar left. I think a lot of the fans are angry with everything that happened, but football is how it is, football is good, and Neymar is a great player who has personality.
“So if he comes here, of course, there will be times when he is criticised by some fans, but in the games, the training sessions, Neymar will still be the same Neymar, and it could be something special for Barcelona.
“He should say sorry. Officially, yes. Say sorry, say he was wrong, say that this is his home, that he is going to be the difference.
“I think that all the fans…many will understand, they’ll see him on the pitch in the league, the Champions League, doing things well, and the fans will forgive him easily.”
If Neymar does return to the Camp Nou this summer – there are so many different suggestions it will happen, but when world-record fees are involved anything and everything can go wrong – then he’ll become the second high-profile player to move back to a former club with his tail between his legs.
Bayern Munich’s Mats Hummels has already completed a move back to Borussia Dortmund, following the arrival of two new defenders at the Allianz Arena.