Barcelona’s corporate sponsors were heavily in favor of bringing Neymar back from Paris Saint-Germain, according to the Catalan TV show La Porteria.
Rakuten, the Japanese giant that sponsors the front of the shirt, and Nike, the American athletics corporation that creates the kits, pushed for the Brazilian’s acquisition, it is said.
— La Porteria (@Laporteriabtv) September 10, 2019
"Sandro Rosell, Rakuten i Nike apretaven perquè Neymar vingués al Barça. Valverde hauria estat encantat"
Intriguingly, former Barcelona president Sandro Rosell, the man who brought Neymar from Brazil to Barcelona in the first place, was also said to be pushing for the move to happen.
That’s all according to Sique Rodríguez, who is the head of sports over at SER Catalunya, in his appearance on the program.
Neymar was the subject of intense negotiations last summer, but in the end, his proposed move to Barça fell apart.
Current Barcelona club president Josep Maria Bartomeu is a friend of Rosell, who resigned over allegations of various wrongdoing. How much influence Rosell has is up for speculation. However, he was the head of Nike in Brazil, which means he has contacts in almost all parties involved in this story, apart from Rakuten, that is.