Paris Saint-Germain crash out of the Champions League: What will it cost them?

Paris Saint-Germain crash out of the Champions League: What will it cost them?

For Paris Saint-Germain, it has become an all-too-familiar story: suffering an untimely exit from the tournament that means more to them than any other.

The French giants’ Champions League hopes have ended for another season, a 3-0 aggregate defeat to Bayern Munich meaning one of the world’s richest clubs will once again be able to call themselves kings of Europe.

Wednesday’s loss may not have had the emotional punch of previous exits – think 2017, when Barcelona overturned a 4-0 first-leg deficit to beat PSG 6-1 at Camp Nou, or even last year when PSG was 2-0 ahead. in total with half an hour to play at Real Madrid only to concede three goals in 17 minutes to Karim Benzema.

But the impact will still be felt strongly. Here, The Athletic looks at the potential effects on and off the field.

How much are the Champions League prizes?

A club that makes it to the group stage of the Champions League is awarded €15.64m (£13.9m; $16.4m). They then receive €2.8m for a win in the group stage and €930,000 for a draw.

PSG won four times and drew twice on their way to the round of 16, earning €13 million. Qualifying for the next stage earned them €9.6m, so before a ball was kicked against Bayern Munich, PSG had amassed €38.3m in cash.

But it could have been so much more. Qualifying for the quarter-finals of the Champions League earns a bonus of €10.6 million, a place in the semi-finals is worth an additional €12.5 million and reaching the final provides a cash injection of €15.5 million. The club that wins the tournament can expect to receive a bonus payment of €4.5 million.

Rodrygo celebrates with the trophy at the end of the 2022 Champions League final (Photo: Cesare Purini/Mondadori Portofoli via Getty Images)

That’s not all. A place in the UEFA Super Cup – a game between the winners of the Champions League and Europa League – is worth €3.5 million. If you win the Super Cup, the bonus is €1 million, while winning the FIFA Club World Cup (a tournament played between various continental champions) gets you €4.6 million.

In total, it is likely that PSG lost €52.2 million in prize money alone.

Is it really that much for a club like PSG?

Well, no. Since they are owned by Qatar Sports Investments (QSI), a subsidiary of the state-owned sovereign wealth fund Qatar Investment Authority, the loss of this kind of money ultimately does not make a huge dent in the club’s finances.

However, it would have been beneficial from a Financial Fair Play (FFP) perspective.

PSG had to pay UEFA €20 million in 2014 in the first round of FFP cases with UEFA and, in September, it was ruled that they had not fulfilled an equal agreement between 2018 and 2022.

They were ordered to pay an unconditional €10m – either directly or through revenue earned from involvement in UEFA club competitions – with €55m contingent on compliance with future targets over three years.

Not the biggest amounts, then, but every little bit helps.


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Where is the cost then?

First of all, in reputation. A star-studded squad should not fail to reach the last eight of the Champions League, but it is becoming an increasingly familiar story.

Since the 2012-13 season, PSG have only reached the semi-finals twice and the final once (2019-2020). Tonight’s exit in the round of 16 is the fifth time they have exited before the quarter-finals in the last seven years.

The powers that be at PSG know that only by winning Europe’s elite club competition will their grand sporting project truly fulfill its sporting ambitions, despite the presence of big names such as Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and Lionel Messi. that have already taken the club to a new level. the terms of the pursuit.

After the World Cup, where Mbappe and Messi dominated a France-Argentina final and Achraf Hakimi helped Morocco reach the semi-finals, it was hoped that the second half of PSG’s season would be one to remember.

Instead, they cracked once again when the pressure was on. Anything that follows – including, in all likelihood, a ninth Ligue 1 title in 11 years – will be little consolation.

So what happens now?

Attention is likely to turn to their coach, Christophe Galtier, and Luis Campos, their football adviser who appointed Galtier after the departure of Mauricio Pochettino last July.

Mbappe, whose contract expires in 2025 after signing a new three-year deal last summer, will be keen to cement his status as the best player in the world. You could already argue that he is ahead of any of his rivals, but the Champions League will elude him for at least another season.

The inside track of PSG’s failure in the Champions League

The good news for PSG is that after losing the first leg in February, Mbappe made it clear that his future at the club is not linked to success in Europe.

“If I linked my future to the Champions League, without wanting to show disrespect to the club, I would have left a long time ago,” said the 24-year-old. “I don’t think this match will have an impact. I am here and I am very happy to be here.

“I’m not thinking about anything other than making PSG successful.”

Kylian Mbappe has insisted his PSG future is not linked to success in the Champions League (Photo: Franck Fife/AFP via Getty Images)

His contract cushion and recent comments he has made will be a tonic for those inside the club, but continued failures in Europe will only hasten his departure.

Messi is reaching the final stages of his career and uncertainty about his future remains. His deal expires in the summer, although he is open to extending his stay in the French capital.


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No team has a divine right to win the tournament, but a team so expensively assembled – even if some of the players were signed as free agents – from a salary perspective should not be eliminated without complaint.

(Feature photo: Alex Grimm/Getty Images)

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