Barcelona captain Lionel Messi says the Catalan club re-signing Neymar would have increased their "chances of achieving our objectives."
The Spanish champions were repeatedly linked with bringing the Brazilian star back to the Nou Camp over the transfer window although Guillem Balague writing for the BBC suggested that Barcelona never wanted to buy him, nor did Paris Saint-Germain want to sell him.
Speaking to Spanish football website Sport, Messi said, "I would have loved to have Neymar back. I understand those people who are against his return and it’s understandable for what happened with ‘Ney’ and the way that he left.
"But thinking about it on a sporting level, I personally think Neymar is one of the best players in the world and having him in our squad would increase our chances of achieving our objectives. In the end, it didn’t happen and we have to think about the squad we have and focus on our goals."
There were reports that the dressing room in Barcelona were asking for Neymar to be purchased by the club. In response to the speculation, Lionel Messi said, "No. Obviously we talk about what we’ve heard and that Neymar could arrive.
"We gave our opinions of whether it’d be good if he came or not but we never said they had to sign him. We gave our opinion in the same way we did with Griezmann and the other players who arrived. And even those who didn’t end up coming in."
There won't be a reuniting of Messi, Suarez, and Neymar at the Nou Camp so far this season, and the 32-year-old Argentine captain says he is not disappointed, "I would have liked for him to return but I think we have a spectacular squad and can achieve everything without him", said Messi. "
So no, I’m not disappointed. I would have liked to play alongside him again, that’s all."