The PSG president should not criticize the spending of other teams, considering where its capital comes from
LatinAmerican Post| Juan Manuel Londoño
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Leer en español: ¿De dónde viene el presupuesto del PSG?
This week, the president of PSG, Nasser Al-Khelaifi, criticized the excessive spending of European soccer teams. “Some clubs have a debt of 1.8 billion euros, it is not healthy,” Nasser Al-Khelaïfi said during a conference on Monday. “Thank God, what we are doing is having zero debt. Of course, we lost money during the COVID-19, but we have nothing to hide. Other clubs have big debts. And that is the risk, the danger for football."
And although this statement at first glance have sense, the truth is that, coming from the president of PSG, it is impossible not to see it as deeply hypocritical. Putting aside the fact that PSG were handed a €10m fine a few days ago by UEFA for breaking Financial Fair Play rules, asking other clubs to control their spending when PSG basically have unlimited funds it's laughable.
In case you don't know, PSG is one of the few clubs in the world owned by a state. The majority shareholder and owner of this team is the Emir of Qatar since 2011, through the state company Qatar Sports Investments. That is why it is no coincidence that from time to time the club receives a “millionaire sponsor” such as Qatar Airways or the Qatar Tourism authority. This is not to mention the enormous amount of money the club has spent on acquiring international-class players, using the funds that come from the oil titan.
Over the past 10 years that Qatar has owned the club, it is estimated that between €1.4bn and €1.5bn have been spent on transfers. In 2017, their biggest spending year, the Parisians spent an exorbitant total of €238m adding Neymar and Mbappé to their squad. An amount that since then they have not exceeded, but that has allowed them to stay at the top of French football during this decade.
This is not to mention the other players that PSG have allowed themselves to acquire over the last 4 years, such as Lionel Messi himself, Gini Wijnaldum, Sergio Ramos and Gigio Donnarumma. Although several of these players have mentioned in the past that they chose the team because it is the ideal environment to develop their skills, or because of the competitiveness of their players, the truth is that the guarantee of a millionaire salary year after year can also play a relevant role on the growing popularity of this team among soccer superstars.
Although the main sponsor of the club is, and will continue to be, the State of Qatar, it must also be recognized that PSG have armed themselves with a list of sponsors enviable for any team. Among its main sponsors are Nike, GOAT and until recently, Air Jordan.
The team also has heavyweight official and premium partners including Visit Rwanda, EA Sports, Coca-Cola, McDonald's, Dior, and Nivea Men.