When a Qatari investment group took control of Paris Saint-Germain last summer, everyone knew they would become a big money player in the transfer market. PSG made an immediate splash with signing the highly sought after Javier Pastore, and other high level players like Menez and Matuidi. With the oil money to back them up, Paris Saint-Germain is set to raise the bar even higher this summer, as they are rumored to have a €200 million budget for this season.
The collective groan you heard is from all the other big spending teams who know the price of their prime targets may have just gone up. PSG has been linked with just about every star player. It is probably easier to list who they have not been linked with rather than who they are linked with. This kind of budget brings two immediate questions. Who will they buy, and how will this affect the rest of the market?
A good starting point for who is in Italy. Napoli’s Ezequiel Lavezzi has been linked with Manchester City, but reports are saying the Argentinian striker may be on his way to Paris as soon as next week. With fellow countryman Pastore already settled, PSG has become an attractive option for Lavezzi.
Another hot rumor making the rounds is the possibility of a swoop for the Real Madrid duo of Higuain and Kaka. While the chances of Madrid parting with both is unlikely, it would be interesting to see what kind of price it would take to pry a talent like Higuain away from the Spanish capitol.
Other players who have been linked with PSG include the likes of Lampard, Adebayor, Clichy, Soldado and Hulk. With the opportunity for Champions League competition, there will be plenty of player movement heading to Paris this summer. Combining the money with the reputations of Leonardo and Ancelotti has made PSG a desired destination.
The effect of their huge budget will be mainly felt at the larger clubs. The poker table for the big spenders has gotten more crowded the last few years. Teams like Chelsea, Manchester City and Real Madrid cannot simply outbid for the services of a player anymore. They now have to rely on the appeal of playing in their respective leagues to sway players away from their Parisian counterparts.
It remains to be seen if the wealth of PSG can buy the ultimate goal of a Champions League title. If they reach that pinnacle, it could be the most expensive title ever.