Pete Jenson: The Nou Camp may one day have a mausoleum but Barcelona hope Neymar deal does not return to haunt them

A Different League: The Brazilian's fee was originally quoted as €57m but a court has heard the true cost to the Catalan giants was €100m

It's difficult to know whether to take news that Barcelona want to accommodate their supporters after death by offering 30,000 urns to be kept in the redesigned Nou Camp as well-meaning sentimentality or just more shrewd business.

For a sizeable fee, fans can spend all of eternity (well not quite eternity, €6,000 gets you 90 years) in the Barcelona mausoleum. Club insiders say they hope it will put an end to the practice of trying to obey a loved one's dying wish by disposing of their ashes on the sly during a guided tour of the stadium.

The remodelled Nou Camp, with its in-built mausoleum, will also carry a sponsor's name. If the last big club in Europe to give in to shirt sponsorship is willing to accept a brand name on its stadium then anyone can. Barça have also sold the space on the inside of their famous shirts. Every euro counts when it's €100m (£82m) not €57m (£48m) you are paying for Neymar.

No doubt when the case that Judge Pablo Ruz admitted to court is finally heard, Barcelona will argue they did nothing wrong when they paid Neymar and N&N, the company owned by the player and his father, €40m (£32.7m). Third-party ownership is after all legal in South America and if N&N part-owned the player's registration, were they not in a position to negotiate a fee, be it as a bonus for signing as a free agent in 2014, or as a penalty for signing before?

Barcelona also paid Neymar's father a €2.6m (£2.1m) commission for negotiating a contract that guarantees a minimum of €54m (£44m) in wages over five years but there is no legislation against agents charging commissions or being related to players.

Will anyone be able to prove that a deal worth €2m (£1.65m) over the next five years for another Neymar-owned company to look for new talent in Brazil is not perfectly genuine? Or that another worth €4m (£3.3m) for them to find new commercial partners for Barcelona in Brazil is also not valid?

Can it be proved that a payment of €7.9m (£6.5m) for preferential rights on three Santos players or the €9m (£7.4m) for two friendlies were not separate from the transfer?

And can it be shown that another contract with another Neymar organisation to help the poorest neighbourhoods in Sao Paulo worth €2.5m (£2.05m) has not been set up to do exactly that? Even if it was not the case before, you can imagine an army of social workers armed with Barça shirts and plans for new football pitches in the favelas, heading for Sao Paulo as soon as judge Ruz decided to hear the case.

The Barcelona president, Sandro Rosell, has been put in an embarrassing position but it may well be impossible to prove that all monies destined for the Neymars were really just disguised wages and ought to be taxed at 52 per cent.

Or that the other monies going to Santos might not also be part of the transfer fee, thus increasing the percentage owed to other third parties who also had a stake in the player?

Barcelona say they have done nothing more than use "business engineering" in a deal that may have involved as many as 12 different contracts. And as long as transfers exist in a fairly unregulated state where it seems anything goes, there is plenty of scope for that.

The only thing that goes on rising as steadily as transfer values is ticket prices. Some Manchester City fans say it will cost them less to fly to Barcelona next month than it will to get into the game.

Perhaps it is fitting then that it was a fan who provoked the Neymar transfer investigation. Pharmacist and Barça supporter Jordi Cases wanted to know what the €40m payment to N&N had been for. Only when the club ignored his requests for transparency did he take his complaint to the courts, unaware of where the paper trail would lead.

News
i100 In this video, the late actor Leonard Nimoy explains how he decided to use the gesture for his character
Arts and Entertainment
Secrets of JK Rowling's Harry Potter workings have been revealed in a new bibliography
arts + ents
News
Robert De Niro has walked off the set of Edge of Darkness
news The Godfather Part II actor has an estimated wealth of over $200m
Arts and Entertainment
Fearne Cotton is leaving Radio 1 after a decade
radio The popular DJ is leaving for 'family and new adventures'
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Robbie Savage will not face a driving ban
football'Mr Marmite' faced the possibility of a 28-day ban
Voices
voices
Life and Style
Nearly half of all young people in middle and high income countries were putting themselves at risk of tinnitus and, in extreme cases, irreversible hearing loss
health
News
It was only when he left his post Tony Blair's director of communications that Alastair Campbell has published books
people The most notorious spin doctor in UK politics has reinvented himself
Life and Style
The new model would be a “pedal assist” bike in which the rider’s strength is augmented by the engine on hills and when they want to go fast
tech
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
Life and Style
fashion
Arts and Entertainment
James Franco and Zachary Quinto in ‘I Am Michael’
filmJustin Kelly's latest film tells the story of a man who 'healed' his homosexuality and turned to God
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower