That’s life

“Ici C’est Paris”, Messi appeared at Bourget airport – Paris in a T-shirt with that text. The whole world watched that event and it shows how much influence Lionel Messi has…

“Ici c’est Messi”, the front page of L’Equipe made a pun when replacing the word Paris in the title of PSG with the name Messi. A pun suffices to show one side of the story: a player equals a club.

Messi has 103 million followers on his personal facebook. How many does PSG have? 43 million, until Messi has not landed at Bourget airport. As for Instagram, PSG, which has 38.6 million followers, has skyrocketed to 42 million, on par with Man Utd’s level, overnight.

The numbers keep going up

The numbers keep going up

In Vietnam, there are people who stay up until 2 am to watch youtube channels livestream Messi’s appearance in Paris. People used to stay up at night like that to wait to see a good game in European tournaments or to watch EURO, World Cup only. And this is not a match. Just waiting to see how Messi appeared, smiled, waved a few times and disappeared immediately. Truly admirable.

10 years ago, QSI completed the purchase of 30% of the shares of PSG to end up completely focusing on one investment category. The total amount they bought PSG was only about 100 million euros. And now, the value of their attack, with the MNM trio, can be several times the amount they spent to buy the whole club.

Of course, now, to buy back PSG, the number is very different. Estimates by Deloitte and Forbes are around 2 billion euros, 20 times what QSI spent.

Many people admire PSG for their investment in transfer over the past 10 years. But also many people hate PSG because of these deals. They think that this is the behavior of the rich to rely on money. But in reality, is PSG so obnoxious in these investments. This is a question that should be answered clearly and satisfactorily.

Is it true that PSG is the one who should be hated for spending so much money?

Is it true that PSG is the one who should be hated for spending so much money?

Over the past 10 years, PSG spent 1.3 billion euros on buying players, earning 450 million euros from selling players, the balance of investment was 850 million. That number is too large compared to any club but it is not a dominant player compared to the spending style of European giants. During his 5 years as president of Barca, Bartomeu also spent up to 1 billion euros on transfers. And Barca is a union club, not a sports business owned by a royal like PSG.

In the Messi case, in fact, PSG did not pay a transfer fee. What they spend is just a bribe for Messi’s family. The salary they paid Messi turned out to be no higher than Barca. At Barca, Messi is receiving a salary of 40 million euros/season according to the old contract. At PSG, his salary is 25 million euros but can be up to 35 million euros depending on the game. It’s not about money anymore. It is a story of opportunity. Messi sees PSG as the team with the best chance of being invited to him at the moment and moreover, there is Neymar, with whom he would love to play.

When it comes to money, we probably haven’t forgotten Ashley Cole’s story with Chelsea. Did Chelsea do anything wrong in that story? That’s a question no one wants to answer. They only worked hard to criticize Chelsea while they forgot that it was the fact that Arsenal maintained a salary system that was too low compared to competitors and a transfer policy that did not promise to conquer the title was what made Cole quit. Go. And he went to the right place. At Chelsea, Cole had everything a professional player wanted: finances and trophies.

Even the Barca – PSG relationship is the same. In 2003, when PSG was still poor compared to Barca in particular and European giants in general, Barca’s vice president Rosell relied on a relationship with a high-ranking Nike figure in Brazil, who had a secret relationship with the club. necessary with Ronaldinho, to personally influence Ronaldo in his move to Barca. Ronaldinho then refused to go to the training ground, leaving coach Halilhodzic really stunned when he had only been in charge a few days before he had to part with the best player he had. Barca made an offer that Ronaldinho could not refuse to buy him outright from PSG for 30 million euros when his contract with PSG was until 2006.

Barca brought in Ronaldinho from PSG in 2003

Barca brought in Ronaldinho from PSG in 2003

The power of money is undeniable. And it is normal for PSG to use that power now. Why choose the behavior of the poor when they have huge wealth in their hands? It’s their own choice and none of us have the right to ask them to use the money in any other way.

PSG can take advantage of UEFA’s two-year “grace” in financial fairness regulations due to the influence of Covid to spend. They could also face penalties if, after this grace period, they don’t have the revenue to balance out their expenses. But what they get is something that overcomes the risk of that penalty. It is certainly global brand recognition and could very well be a Champions League and a Ballon d’Or for one outstanding individual in this squad.

The French have a saying “C’est la vie”, “such is life”. Yes, life is like that, whoever is strong for rice, violent for money, that person easily seizes control. We also face many times in life that we have “smashed money into the paper” but sometimes, some of us also use financial power as a power. Then let’s take it as normal at PSG. Anyway, with their title “Ici C’est Paris”, they also have the right to say “C’est La Vie” for their brutal story.

Ha Quang Minh


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