Updated 11:42 AM EST, Sun, Dec 05, 2021

Real Madrid’s Zinedine Zidane Don't Mind Neymar Transfer Rumors

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Newly-appointed Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane recently downplayed transfer talks which claimed the Los Blancos are deeply interested in signing FC Barcelona winger Neymar this summer.

The 43-year old former French international told Spanish reporters over the weekend, via Daily Mail, that such rumors have not affected the team. He noted that trade talks are normal fixtures in the world of soccer, and shouldn't always be treated seriously.

"The rumours don't bother the dressing room. It's normal that you [the press] speak of things like this," he explained. "It'll always happen, as it did with Cristiano [Ronaldo]. It's normal if clubs want him, but what we have to do is concentrate on our work."

Managing Madrid reported that the Santiago Bernabéu squad would have to sell its star asset Cristiano Ronaldo in order to shed enough salary to bring in Neymar, who is currently in talks with Barca for a lucrative contract extension.

The 23-year old Brazilian superstar has already heard of the transfer talks and has reacted furiously.

Goal pointed out that Spanish journalist Manolo Lama had reported on the air about Neymar recently being in Madrid to further discuss a deal with the Los Blancos. In response to the allegations, Neymar posted a video on Snapchat saying, "Manolo Lama, you said that I was in Madrid yesterday. Start talking the truth, you fool!" The video even had the caption "For the journalist that talks s***."

Lama strongly maintained that his report was based from credible sources and he didn't mean for Neymar to get mad. The reporter did apologize to the Brazilian international. However, the apology had a hint of condescension.

"Those that told me they saw [Neymar] in Madrid [on Thursday night] still swear that it was him," said Lama. "If you really didn't go to Madrid, then I invite you to the Tatel so you can see how good it is to eat in this restaurant - and if you come with your friends, even better."

The recent transfer talks linking Neymar to the Los Blancos emerged a few days after FIFA temporarily suspended the transfer ban it imposed on Real and Atletico Madrid.

The Madrid teams were initially prohibited from signing new players for the next two transfer windows after violating international regulation on signing under-18 players. The ban was lifted last week, since FIFA decided to hear the appeals of both clubs. The suspension will remain until FIFA reaches a final verdict, The Guardian reported.

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