PARIS — Paris Saint-Germain have avoided financial fair play (FFP) sanctions for 2015, 2016 and 2017 but UEFA wants the French champions to raise millions by the end of the month or face future punishment.
UEFA closed its FFP investigation into PSG on Wednesday after declaring itself satisfied with their “break-even result” for 2015-17. However, the club remain under scrutiny for transfer activity from last summer up to and including this summer’s window, and their compliance with this year’s break-even requirements.
Not yet taken into UEFA’s account are last summer’s world-record €222 million signing of Neymar from Barcelona, and the loan with an obligation to buy of Kylian Mbappe from Monaco — both of which prompted the Club Financial Control Body’s investigation.
PSG have avoided the threat of a ban from the Champions League, but need to raise significant funds — L’Equipe reported a figure of €60 million — before the end of the month to avoid any immediate issues.
Assuming that PSG have balanced the books by the end of this month, which looks likely with a number of potential transfers lined up — notably the sale of Goncalo Guedes — then the next challenge will be avoiding sanctions in the next financial period.
According to L’Equipe, PSG are short this period because a number of Qatar-based contracts — such as Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA), Qatar National Bank (QNB), Ooredoo, beIN Sports and Aspetar — have been significantly devalued, on top of Neymar and Mbappe being out of the equation.
To avoid the star pair becoming an issue, PSG need to boost commercial revenue and can do that by finding new sponsorship partners or renegotiating current deals — both of which are already being discussed internally.
Although they are unlikely to spend anywhere near as heavily this summer as last, they will not suffer squad or salary restrictions and could make bigger moves further down the line if they break even this year.
A number of transfers had been put on hold until UEFA’s decision, notably the signing of goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon from Juventus on a free.
A UEFA statement said: “The CFCB investigatory chamber further decided to close the investigation into PSG. The decision follows a detailed review of transfer contracts and an analysis of the related management accounts which confirmed that such transactions were in line with the UEFA club licensing and financial fair play regulations.
“Furthermore, the chamber concluded that after significant fair value adjustments of several club sponsorship contracts — on the basis of evaluations performed by independent third-party assessors — the break-even result of the club remains within acceptable deviation for the financial years ending in 2015, 2016 and 2017.
“The financial impact of transfer activities as from the 2017 summer — up to and including the upcoming transfer window — and compliance with the break-even requirement for the 2018 financial year will remain under close scrutiny.”
UEFA also levied hefty fines against Galatasaray for failing to break even, as well as moderate penalties to Marseille and Maccabi Tel Aviv.
Jonathan Johnson covers PSG and the French national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @Jon_LeGossip.