Barca says Neymar not available for Copa, but can play Rio Olympics

  • AP, Rio de Janeiro
  • Updated: Apr 09, 2016 12:45 IST
Neymar has expressed his desire to play for Brazil in both the Copa America and the Rio Olympics, but Barcelona has thus far given him permission only for the Olympic Games. (REUTERS)

Brazil’s football confederation has told La Liga club Barcelona that it wants star striker Neymar’s availability for both the Copa America Centenario in June and the Rio Olympics in August.

Earlier on Friday, Barcelona’s chairman Josep Maria Bartolomeu sent a letter to the CBF saying the club would release Neymar for only the Rio Olympics, but not the Copa America.

In a statement the CBF said it would make “every possible effort to count on Neymar Jr. at the Copa America and at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.”

The Barcelona star has already said he wishes to play for Brazil in both tournaments.

“We count on his efforts with the club,” the CBF said. Brazil has never won gold in Olympic football, and the Copa America is key for Brazil coach Dunga’s future.

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