PSG’s Rise In French Football Allegedly Due To ‘Financial Doping’ – -Study
Before Paris Saint-Germain (PSG)’s acquisition by the Qatar Sports Investments Group (QSI) in 2011, its success in domestic French soccer had been moderate. However, it has since won eight of the last 10 league titles in large part due to having spent approximately $1.37 billion on player transfers in the last decade leading to accusations of financial doping, according to GlobalData.
The valuation of PSG’s sponsorships dwarf the rest of the Ligue 1
The leading data and analytics company’s latest report, ‘The Business of Ligue 1’, reveals that PSG completely dwarfs the rest of the league financially based on the valuations of its sponsorship deals, especially its shirt sponsor and kit supplier deals.
PSG’s new shirt sponsorship with Qatar Airways is believed to be worth $80 million a year, which is more than three times as valuable as the next highest valued deal in the league, which is Lyon’s deal with Emirates Airlines, valued at an estimated $21.68 million.
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Additionally, PSG’s kit supplier deal with Nike is believed to be worth approximately $90 million a year, which constitutes 65.8% of the league’s total kit supplier value.
Tanveer Aujla, Sport Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “PSG’s stranglehold on Ligue 1 will be difficult to break given the wealth of star power it has compared to everyone else, as well as its continued ability to spend significant sums of money on some of the world’s best players. Without the financial backing from QSI, the reality is that PSG probably wouldn’t have achieved even half of its domestic success, and Ligue 1 would be a much more competitive and interesting league as a result.”
PSG has often been compared to Manchester City in the current soccer landscape, as both are incredibly wealthy and run by state-backed organizations, which has allowed them to spend copious amounts of money to increase their domestic success. City spent much of the 2000s finishing mid-table but has now won four of the last five Premier League titles and is a clear favourite this season too. This is a remarkable turnaround, and PSG’s fortunes have followed a somewhat similar path.
PSG accused of financial doping by LaLiga
Aujla continues: “This incredible amount of spending has attracted heavy criticism from those within soccer, and insinuations that both clubs have essentially bought their success, unlike previous eras of the sport, where success was often measured through earning it on the pitch.”
LaLiga has accused both clubs of ‘financial doping’, a term which insinuates cheating by financially investing personal wealth into a team’s fortunes. While both clubs have strenuously denied the accusations, both have gotten into trouble with UEFA for breaking Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations. While the charges against City amounted to nothing, PSG was hit with a fine of $10 million due to FFP breaches, indicating that the club was guilty of wrongdoing.
Aujla notes: “Despite the financial penalty inflicted on PSG, this is not exactly harmful to a club with so much wealth. Breaching FFP regulations should be considered a serious matter, but the team has so much star power that it seems UEFA may be unwilling to dish out any kind of European ban on the club, due to UEFA potentially missing out on viewership and revenues as a result of the team’s absence.”
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