Ney­mar deal makes fi­nan­cial sense, says PSG pres­i­dent

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

PARIS: Ney­mar’s world record 222 mil­lion euro ($264 mil­lion) trans­fer fee may look ex­pen­sive, but it will end up earn­ing a great deal of money for Paris Sain­tGer­main, club pres­i­dent Nasser Al-Khe­laifi in­sisted yes­ter­day.

Ney­mar, 25, is among the world’s finest play­ers and will help the am­bi­tious Ligue 1 club gain the suc­cess it craves in Europe. But the eye-pop­ping fee left many ex­perts di­vided over whether it was good busi­ness or a risky fi­nan­cial gam­ble.

“I don’t think it’s ex­pen­sive, I’m con­vinced we are go­ing to earn more money with him. It’s a project of two brands: We’re as­so­ci­at­ing the Ney­mar brand and the PSG brand,” Al-Khe­laifi said.

And the in­cred­i­ble com­mer­cial po­ten­tial of the for­mer Barcelona star was vis­i­ble af­ter his first day at the club, with a rush on PSG shops on the Champ­sEl­y­sees and Parc des Princes to pur­chase his cov­eted num­ber 10 jer­sey.

The French club had al­ready clawed back around a mil­lion eu­ros on their world-record in­vest­ment in just one day thanks to sell­ing a stag­ger­ing 10,000 shirts bear­ing the Brazil­ian’s name, cost­ing 140 eu­ros each.

The club are also ex­pected to sell a fur­ther 15,000 Ney­mar shirts on Satur­day, when he was pre­sented to the fans at the Parc des Princes ahead of their Ligue 1 opener against Amiens.

The merg­ing of the brands ap­pears to have com­mer­cial po­ten­tial too.

PSG deputy manag­ing direc­tor Fred­eric Longuepee told AFP that the club was val­ued at 1 bil­lion eu­ros and has “200 mil­lion fans around the world”.

As for the Ney­mar brand, the player has 30 mil­lion Twit­ter fol­low­ers, 60 mil­lion on Face­book and a whop­ping 78 mil­lion on In­sta­gram-sec­ond only to Real Madrid su­per­star Cris­tiano Ron­aldo.

“With Ney­mar, PSG will sell a great deal of shirts and have all kinds of com­mer­cial part­ner­ships in France and around the world, but it is dif­fi­cult to mea­sure how much,” Jean-Pas­cal Gayant, Pro­fes­sor of Eco­nom­ics at the Univer­sity of Le Mans, told AFP.

Gayant be­lieves that while the trans­fer fee may look “risky”, the club would swiftly rene­go­ti­ate its ex­ist­ing com­mer­cial and spon­sor­ship con­tracts to ben­e­fit from the Ney­mar ef­fect.

‘HIS VALUE WILL DOU­BLE’

“There are not two Ney­mars in the world. I would love for us to meet in two years and see what his value will be com­pared to to­day. At least dou­ble,”boasted Al-Khe­laifi.

Pun­dits in Eng­land sug­gest part of the trans­fer fee gold rush is fu­elled by a be­lief prices will in­deed rise sharply, but not ev­ery­one agrees.

“Not much sur­prises me any­more, but 400 mil­lion (eu­ros) would do the trick.

In sport­ing terms, phys­i­cally he is at his peak value now, in our way of cal­cu­lat­ing a player’s value. The op­ti­mum is around 26 or 27-years-old (he’s 25),” said Loic Ravenel, a re­searcher with the Foot­ball Ob­ser­va­tory.

“Over the next five years his value will rise but, maybe not to those sum­mits,” he told AFP of AlKhe­laifi’s pre­dic­tions.

And the Foot­ball Ob­ser­va­tory es­ti­mated Ney­mar’s value us­ing their al­go­rithm which they can ap­ply to any foot­baller in Europe-at 210.7 mil­lion eu­ros.

“The most added value would be with (Kylian) Mbappe, (Paul) Pogba, or (An­thony) Mar­tial, play­ers at 21-22 (18, 24 and 21 in fact), and who can still be resold at 26, which is the case in point with Ney­mar,” the ex­pert in­sisted.

“But maybe by then an­other young foot­baller may have come along and re­placed him, maybe some­one even bet­ter, at­tract­ing the me­dia and the spon­sors.”

For­mer Ar­gentina coach Marcelo Bielsa, now with French side Lille, be­lieves Ney­mar is value for money.

“If one con­sid­ers what he brings or pro­duces noth­ing that is in­vested is ex­ag­ger­ated. Ac­cord­ing to this logic, Ney­mar is not ex­pen­sive,”said Bielsa.

For­mer Barcelona vice-pres­i­dent Marc Ingla hailed Ney­mar’s sign­ing as a new dawn for the French league.

“It’s ex­cit­ing, it’s very good news for French foot­ball,”said Spa­niard Ingla, now direc­tor gen­eral at Lille.

“I have great be­lief in Ligue 1 and its abil­ity to pro­duce great tal­ents. For me, France is like the Brazil of Europe. Ney­mar is an ac­cel­er­a­tor of the im­age of Ligue 1 which he can bring to wider tele­vi­sion au­di­ences.”On the pitch, PSG are hop­ing Ney­mar can help them win back the Ligue 1 ti­tle they lost to Monaco last sea­son, and also fi­nally get their hands on the Cham­pi­ons League tro­phy.

“There are not two Ney­mars in the world. I would love for us to meet in two years and see what his value will be com­pared to to­day”

— AP

Brazil­ian soc­cer star Ney­mar walks away with the chair­man of Paris Saint-Ger­main Nasser Al-Khe­laifi, left, fol­low­ing a press con­fer­ence in Paris Fri­day.

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