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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 19 June 2018

Neymar's PSG escape Uefa sanctions but remain under scrutiny

Uefa Club Financial Control Body had been monitoring Ligue 1's 'break-even requirement' for 2015, 2016 and 2017

Paris Saint-Germain have an expensively assembled squad. AFP
Paris Saint-Germain have an expensively assembled squad. AFP

UEFA has closed its financial fair-play case against Paris Saint-Germain after the Qatari-backed French Ligue 1 champions were cleared of any wrongdoing on Wednesday.

The UEFA Club Financial Control Body had been monitoring PSG’s "break-even requirement" for 2015, 2016 and 2017.

“Compliance with the break-even requirement for the 2018 financial year will remain under close scrutiny,” UEFA said.

The French champions now have some breathing space to move out a string of players before the start of next season.

PSG observers claim the club are open to offers for Javier Pastore, Gonçalo Guedes, Angel Di Maria and Adrien Rabiot, and hope to cover Neymar’s transfer fee with the money brought in by those moves.

Wage bills will also be slashed – Thiago Motta has retired and Hatem Ben Arfa is out of contract.

The club have just hired a new coach in Germany’s Thomas Tuchel, and on top of his personal transfer targets, the club’s owners are said to be close to bringing veteran goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon to Paris.

UEFA opened an investigation into PSG’s compliance with financial fair-play rules at the start of this season, just weeks after they completed deals to sign Neymar and Kylian Mbappe.

Neymar arrived for a world-record fee of €222 million (Dh962.9m) from Barcelona, while the club also signed Mbappe on loan from Monaco, but with an agreement to sign the teen sensation in a €180m deal at the end of this campaign.

British newspaper the Financial Times in April claimed PSG had “overstated” sponsorship contracts to the tune of €200m.

In 2014, UEFA deemed PSG had artificially inflated their income using a sponsorship deal with another Qatari state-owned enterprise, the Qatar Tourism Authority.