July 21, 2019
Latest News

Neto: Being at Barcelona is a reward

Barcelona, Jul 9 (efe-epa).- Barcelona's new goalkeeper Brazilian Norberto Murara, better known as Neto, was officially presented at the club on Tuesday.

He described his move from fellow La Liga club Valencia to the Catalan side as a reward for his efforts over the course of his career.

"It's the perfect time for me (to arrive at Barcelona)," Neto said during the presentation event.

"Being here is a reward, but I have worked hard to achieve this.

"The important thing is to remember where I am from and to make the most of this move."

Neto signed a contract with the La Liga champion until June 30, 2023.

The 29-year-old player posed for the media showing the team's kit, with shirt number 13 that formerly belonged to his predecessor, Jasper Cillessen, who has replaced him at Valencia.

"I'm the happiest person in the world to be here, I've always dreamed about it and I want to show my talent," Neto added.

Barcelona announced the signing on 27 June, with Neto set to be the substitute goalkeeper for Germany goalie Marc-André ter Stegen, for 26 million euros ($29.6 million) plus another nine million euros in add-ons.

One day earlier, Valencia officially signed Cillessen until the end of the 2022/2023 season, he was officially presented on Tuesday as well.

Barcelona's president Josep Maria Bartomeu said that Valencia is set to pay 35 million euros for the transfer of the Netherlands keeper and denied that signing Neto was only to maintain the club's economic balance for last season.

"Cillessen has already told us a while ago that he wanted to leave the club," he said.

"Here came some offers, but he did not like any because he wanted to play the Champions League until Valencia's offer came."

He also discussed how the first idea of the board was to bring Iñaki Peña from the Barça's B-Team to the first team.

The club's coaches preferred to keep Peña in the B team so that the 20-year-old goalie's development would continue as Peña will be playing more minutes, which was ultimately why Barcelona started to look for a goalie in the transfer market.

"While looking for a goalkeeper in the market, the best there was Neto, who wanted to leave Valencia, and whom we know well because he is a goalkeeper that we have had problems with (playing against)," Bartomeu added.

He also said that Neto has accepted the challenge to play in an extremely demanding club like Barcelona, following his two-year tenure at Valencia, and after he has previously played for Italian Fiorentina and Serie A champion Juventus.

Neto acknowledged that he is to be the second goalie at Barcelona and that Ter Stegen is one of the best in the world at the moment.

He added that he will embrace the challenge with full drive and ambition as he intends to give his all to earn a role in the squad. EFE-EPA

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