Real Madrid smell blood in the hunt for Neymar as PSG face FFP worries
The French club are confident that they will not face Financial Fair Play sanctions, but more austere times could be ahead
Paris Saint-Germain will continue a series of meetings with UEFA in the near future, with allegations circling that they could be in trouble over their financial dealings.
Reports have emerged claiming that the French champions failed to comply with Financial Fair Play regulations by ‘overstating’ sponsorship deals which helped them fund the big-money signings of Neymar and Kylian Mbappe.
A world-record fee of £174.3 million was paid to Barcelona to bring in Neymar, while they are obliged to pay Monaco £165.7 million this summer to complete the permanent signing of Mbappe.
At the time, La Liga president Javier Tebas accused Les Parisiens of “financial doping” in order to complete the deals. If found guilty, it would be the second time in four years that the club has been in violation of FFP rules.
In 2014, the club was fined £50 million of European prize money due to issues with another sponsorship deal.
PSG claim their innocence
However, the club has dismissed any suggestions that they have broken the rules, and are confident they have not been involved in any wrongdoing.
Their financial dealings have been closely monitored by UEFA since their fine four years ago, and they are said to be happy with the transparency of their operations.
With the game’s governing bodies keeping closer and closer scrutiny on PSG, though, it could mean an end to the bank-breaking deals that the club appear to have made the norm – for the time being, at least.
They will still spend where they see fit, but any more £150 million transfers may well be put on hold. If they are found guilty, meanwhile, one club, in particular, will be licking their lips – Real Madrid.
Their desire to rub salt into Barcelona’s still-fresh wound by taking Neymar back to Spain is no secret, and they will be encouraged by any pressure put on PSG to tighten their purse strings.
No Champions League, no Neymar?
What could be even more significant is the potential European ban which the French side would face if found guilty of this second offence.
Neymar is in Paris to win the Champions League. PSG didn’t need him to win Ligue Un or the Coupe de France, and Neymar didn’t need to go to Paris to pick up barely contested domestic trinkets. They’re in it for the big one.
If PSG are banned from European competition, the club can’t uphold their end of the bargain. His happiness in Paris is already the source of media speculation and he wouldn’t be content to spend another year of his career in a stagnant league if the Champions League isn’t there for him to win.
Madrid readying summer transfer assault
Madrid are expected to go big in the transfer market this summer. Kane, Salah, Lewandowski, De Gea and Neymar will be getting phone calls from their agents, and there are few, if any, clubs who can compete with them.
Moreover, Madrid may well be the perfect project for Neymar as Barcelona had once seemed to be. Follow in the footsteps of the club’s greatest player, then take his throne once the time is right.
The Brazilian did not have the patience to wait for Lionel Messi to lose his touch – he would be waiting a while and so ploughed his own furrow.
Ronaldo’s greatness does not seem to be diminishing either but he is two years Messi’s senior and will turn 34 next season. Gareth Bale’s time in Madrid looks like it is sputtering to a disappointing conclusion. They are ready for a new Galáctico.
PSG’s commitment to spending their way to the top of the world game could well see them sink their claws into Neymar and refuse to let go.
But, if they are forced to sell, one destination is more likely than any other. Blaugrana – get your pigs’ heads ready.
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