Barcelona fans chant 'Neymar! Neymar!' at president Josep Maria Bartomeu


Ernesto Valverde is under renewed pressure already after Barcelona lost 1-0 to Athletic Bilbao on the opening day of La Liga's new season. 

The champions were bereft of inspiration, not helped by Luis Suarez being forced off through injury in the first half. 

The Uruguayan will join Lionel Messi in the treatment room, Antoine Griezmann and Ousmane Dembele failing to step up in their absences. 

So who did step up? Aritz Aduriz, that's who. 

The 38-year-old came on in the dying minutes as Bilbao tried to grind out a goalless draw. 

In that time, the veteran striker had just two touches. This was one of them: 

Wow - simply sensational.

It's easy to say that Barcelona should not be panicking. After all, the last time they lost on the opening day was 11 years ago, and they won a treble that season. 

However, there is so often an impending sense of catastrophe whenever the club suffers a setback. Valverde's reign is being defined by his failures in the Champions League and some of his decisions, like leaving Sergio Busquets on the bench on Friday night, therefore face huge scrutiny. 

Athletic Club v FC Barcelona  - La Liga

It will take a lot to cheer the Camp Nou faithful up, but they still have their hopes set on a happy end to the transfer window. 

Philippe Coutinho is heading to Bayern Munich on loan, fuelling speculation that Neymar's return could be imminent. 

Now, we should stress there are no guarantees. There is still a lot of bad blood between PSG and Barca after the initial world record deal two years ago. That could prove a stumbling block. 

What Barcelona fans won't tolerate, though, is for the board to not even attempt a reunion. 

As such, Goal report that supporters were shouting "Neymar! Neymar!" repeatedly at president Josep Maria Bartomeu as he arrived with players at the team hotel. 


He can be in no doubt as to their wishes. 

For all the circus that surrounds the forward, the thought of putting the 'MSN' band back together is almost too good to turn down. 

The Brazilian is desperate for a move and by most accounts, his current employers are sick of the saga, too. 

So it's over to Barcelona to make it happen, fuelled by a sense of urgency after another lacklustre, disjointed display. 

Should Barcelona re-sign Neymar? Have your say in the comments. 

News Now - Sport News