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I don't think Pique was joking – Alba confident Neymar will stay

Barcelona full-back Jordi Alba does not think Gerard Pique was joking when he said Neymar would be staying at the club.

The centre-back caused a stir on Sunday when he posted a picture of himself and team-mate Neymar on social media with the simple caption "He stays".

The tweet prompted speculation that the Brazil star has rejected the chance to join Paris Saint-Germain, who are said to have been readying a world-record bid of €222million to activate the release clause in his contract.

Alba says he has not spoken with Neymar about his intentions but he hopes that Pique's post was in earnest.

"You'll have to ask Geri about these statements," he said on Monday, as quoted by Mundo Deportivo.

"I haven't spoken to Ney at all about the subject. I don't think it's a joke from Pique. I hope it isn't."

Further reports in France have suggested that Neymar's entourage were surprised by Pique's tweet and insist that the 25-year-old has not yet decided his future.

Alba has little idea about the former Santos star's plans but is confident that Neymar is happy with life in Spain.

"Neymar is a Barca player until it's said otherwise. Ney is very calm, he's happy here at Barca," he said.

"I don't have to convince anybody to do anything. I'm not in the head of any of my team-mates.

"For me, it's the best club in the world. I'm at home here, with my family. Every player has his opinion and every player does what he has to do.

"You have to respect that but Ney is still a Barca player and we hope to have him for many years."