Lionel Messi NeymarGetty

‘Maybe Neymar knows PSG are talking with Messi’ – Rivaldo believes Barcelona departure could happen

Neymar may be airing a desire to be reunited with Lionel Messi because he “already knows Paris Saint-Germain are talking”, says Rivaldo, with the Barcelona legend suggesting that a talismanic presence could be edging towards the exits at Camp Nou.

Speculation continues to rage when it comes to six-time Ballon d’Or winner Messi’s future in Catalunya.

Having seen efforts to secure a switch over the summer blocked off, Messi has committed to honouring the final year of his contract at Barca.

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No extension has been agreed, though, and he could enter into talks with interested parties from January.

Few clubs boast the spending power and ambition to prise an all-time great away from Barcelona, with an exciting project required in order for the mercurial Argentine to consider severing ties with the only club side he has represented at senior level.

PSG fall into that category, alongside Premier League heavyweights Manchester City, and those in the French capital are starting to state their case for a deal to be done.

Neymar, who enjoyed four productive years alongside Messi at Barca between 2013 and 2017, has led calls for his former team-mate to join him at Parc des Princes.

Rivaldo believes a dream held by his fellow Brazilian could soon become a reality, with it possible that a stunning coup for PSG could also convince World Cup winner Kylian Mbappe to stay put.

“After the match [against Manchester United], Neymar said he would love to partner with Lionel Messi again and talked up the possibility of that happening next season,” Rivaldo told Betfair.

“They are friends and chat a lot. Knowing about Messi's contract expiring with Barcelona, I believe that the Brazilian star may press his club to sign him next season.

“Messi will be free to negotiate with another club from January, so it's possible that he may move to France.

“Messi seems to be looking for a new adventure in his career and PSG are aware that they won't need to pay anything to Barcelona to get him. The French club could be preparing a move to sign the Argentinian star to partner with Neymar.

“It would be great to see them playing together again and I don't think Neymar's comments were an accident. Perhaps he already knows PSG are talking with Messi.

“According to reports, Kylian Mbappe wants to leave PSG for Real Madrid, but with this new chance of playing alongside Messi and Neymar, the Frenchman could reconsider and prefer to stay in Paris.

“If PSG manage to unite the three next season they would have a fantastic trio that certainty will make PSG a top contender in all competitions.”

Barca have not given up hope of tying Messi to fresh terms, with many of those running in the club’s presidential election – which is due to be held on January 24 – stating a desire to keep the forward in his current surroundings.