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Neymar return to Barcelona ruled out by presidential hopeful who is also planning Messi talks

Xavi Vilajoana formed part of Josep Maria Bartomeu’s regime at Camp Nou and is now looking to take control of the Blaugrana boardroom himself

Xavi Vilajoana has told Goal that he will be making no attempt to re-sign Neymar if his presidential election campaign at Barcelona proves successful.

In the wake of Josep Maria Bartomeu’s departure from Camp Nou, a new management regime will take to the boardroom in 2021.

Elections are due to be held on January 24, with Vilajoana among those looking to seize power at a La Liga heavyweight.

He has already spent several years working alongside Bartomeu, but is now branching out by himself.

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If Barca’s reins were to be handed to him, there would be some big decisions to make across the early weeks of his tenure.

One of those will be who to target in upcoming transfer windows, with the Blaugrana needing to start building for the future.

It has been suggested on a regular basis that Neymar could be lured back to Catalunya from Paris Saint-Germain, but Vilajoana says the Brazilian forward will not form part of his recruitment plans.

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He told Goal: “Barcelona must focus on the players it has and on continuing to promote the evolution of the academy boys, who are very good, so we are not considering the signing of Neymar in any case.”

Another of the dilemmas facing any incoming president at Barca is what to do with talismanic club captain Lionel Messi.

The six-time Ballon d’Or winner has already made one push for the exits, which was blocked off, but he is due to become a free agent next summer and can speak with interested parties from January.

“Messi has a contract with the club until June 30,” Vilajoana said when asked if he has any concerns regarding the Argentine’s future.

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“When we get to the presidency, if the partners consider it so, we will talk to him and see what we find.

“The first thing would be to listen to him because it is not useful for me to be told that he is talking to others. I do not know what they say, I like to talk to people because if we do not talk then you get speculation and nothing can be decided based on that.

“If I am the president of Barcelona I will speak with him openly and honestly, thinking about the best for the club.”

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