Real Madrid's pursuit of Paris Saint-Germain's Neymar Jr might be too good to be true but the Spanish heavyweights may be on the verge of sealing a sensational deal amid claims of making significant progress.
Los Blancos and their arch-rivals Barcelona are believed to be locked in a two-way battle for the 27-year-old Brazilian's signature and the former recently emerged as frontrunners in the race despite the player being linked with a move to Barcelona throughout the summer.
The Bernabeu outfit's current stance has been aided by the fact that PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi has placed an embargo on the ex-Santos prodigy's return to Camp Nou. According to Marca, the Qatari owner has already given Neymar's representatives the green light to begin talks with Real Madrid and the two parties are expected to reach an agreement soon.
Nevertheless, the biggest challenge which could stall the ongoing talks will be Los Merengues' inability to match PSG's valuation of their most-prized asset. With the French club iterating that it is not interested in a player plus cash deal, Zinedine Zidane's side aims to sell a few players in order to fund the move.
Having already spent a fortune on the transfer of Eden Hazard, Luka Jovic, Ferland Mendy, Éder Militão and Rodrygo this summer, Madrid risks breaching Financial Fair Play regulations should they splash out the big bucks to acquire Neymar's service. Instead, they hope to find buyers for the likes of Gareth Bale, James Rodriguez and Mariano Diaz whose future under Zizou is in serious doubt.
In a positive light, Bayern Munich has reportedly reignited its interest in signing Bale while either Napoli or Atletico Madrid is expected to make a swoop for James. Reports from Spain and France also suggest that AS Monaco is close to bringing Mariano Diaz back to Ligue 1.
As a result, confidence remains high in the camp of Real Madrid for Neymar to join should enough money be raised before the transfer window closes on September 2. Zinedine Zidane is also believed to be onboard with the idea despite not getting his desire to bring Paul Pogba to Bernabeu fulfilled by Los Blancos president Florentino Perez.