| 5.6°C Dublin

Barca deny any tax fraud over Neymar

Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu (r) reiterated at a court appearance yesterday that neither he nor the club intentionally committed tax fraud in the signing of Brazil forward Neymar.

Bartomeu was a vice president under former president Sandro Rosell when Neymar was signed in 2013 and he the club have been accused of defrauding the tax office of €2.8m in 2014.

Rosell, who has also denied wrongdoing, resigned over allegations the club did not pay several millions more in taxes it owed for 2011, 2012 and 2013, saying he wanted to protect the club's image.

"President Bartomeu gave explanations to all about which he was questioned," Barca said.

"He made it clear that it has never been his intention, nor that of the club's executives, to aim to defraud the National Tax Office."

The tax probe was launched after a member questioned the figures given by the club for the Neymar deal. Barca initially said they paid €57.1m but later admitted the cost was nearer €100m.