Thibault Camus/Associated Press
Paris Saint-Germain agreed to a four-year contract extension with Neymar that will keep him in the French capital until 2026, according to ESPN’s Julien Laurens.
Neymar’s future at PSG had been the subject of speculation since his previous deal was due to expire in June 2022. In an interview with French television channel TF1 on Sunday, the Brazilian affirmed his desire to remain for the long haul.
“I’m very happy today,” he said (via the Independent‘s Shrivathsa Sridhar). “Things have changed a lot. I can’t exactly explain why—if it’s just me, or something else has changed.”
“I have adapted. I feel calmer, and I’m very happy here. I want to stay at PSG, and I hope Kylian [Mbappe] will stay, too. Of course, that’s the wish of every PSG supporter. With Kylian, we have a relationship of brothers … we really like to play together.”
PSG paid a world-record fee of €222 million to sign Neymar from Barcelona in August 2017. Since then, they have won Ligue 1 on three straight occasions and reached the 2019-20 Champions League final.
During that time, Neymar has scored 83 goals across all competitions, averaging 0.86 goals per 90 minutes, according to FBRef.
Paris Saint-Germain have the finances to match whatever Neymar would be able to earn at another club. Some have wondered, however, whether their domestic dominance would work against them in terms of keeping the Brazilian around. Perhaps the 28-year-old would want a fresh challenge after having conquered France.
Last season’s UCL run and the hiring of Mauricio Pochettino, who transformed Tottenham Hotspur, will have provided compelling reasons to stay.
As Laurens noted, the drama isn’t over for PSG since Mbappe is also set to be a free agent in a year-and-a-half.
It seems inevitable the 22-year-old will leave at some point because he could basically walk into any big club across Europe. Given his age, Mbappe might be open to staying in Paris for a few more seasons to chase a Champions League trophy.