Despite an XXL downsizing, Paris Saint-Germain has not reached its financial objectives during this summer mercato. One man is in the eye of the storm these days in the capital: Antero Henrique.
150 million euros. Paris Saint-Germain wanted to recover this sum during the summer. In the end, it was a third of that sum that was collected with the dry sales of Arnaud Kalimuendo (€20 million), Thilo Kehrer (€12 million), Alphonse Areola (€9.3 million), Thierno Baldé (€3 million), Idrissa Gueye (€2 million) and Marcin Bulka (€2 million). While the squad has been largely purified, with 20 departures, the leaders are not totally satisfied with the work done by Antero Henrique.
Salaries partly paid by PSG
The former sporting director, in charge of sales to obtain the necessary funds to complete some transfers that finally fell through (Skriniar, Bernardo Silva, Tchouaméni, Lewandowski), is being singled out internally, says L’Equipe. Indeed, the Portuguese is criticized for a too superfluous management of files with many departures that have not brought anything in the immediate future. The loans, for example, will only allow a partial saving. Julian Draxler, whose loan without option to buy to Benfica will bring 2.5 million euros, is still paid 80% by the Parisian club. For Layvin Kurzawa and Georginio Wijnaldum, respectively on loan to Fulham and Roma, salaries are paid at 60% and 40%. Ander Herrera, temporarily transferred to Athletic Bilbao, has not given up his signing bonus negotiated at his arrival, in 2019.
Could it be otherwise with the huge contracts, most of them signed by Leonardo? The mission was in any case perilous and the Lusitanian leader had to find the parade in emergency to players who did not want to make major concessions. He can still boast of having negotiated more or less interesting purchase options for some of the undesirables. Leandro Paredes, who left to try his luck at Juventus, could bring up to 25.6 million euros if he meets certain criteria. Abdou Diallo, whose loan at Leipzig has already brought in 2 million euros, has a departure clause of 25 million euros. Wijnaldum, 8 million euros, Eric-Junior Dina Ebimbe (Frankfurt), 6 million euros and Edouard Michut (Sunderland), 6 million euros, can also inflate the Parisian coffers.
The Navas and Soler cases.
Nevertheless, other issues have accentuated the tensions between Henrique and his compatriot, Luis Campos. The case of Keylor Navas is symptomatic. While he had an agreement with Napoli for a three-year contract, the Costa Rican goalkeeper had agreed to a salary cut (from €10m to €8.5m) on condition that it did not exceed one million over one year. To complete his departure, the manager only had to grant him the 500,000 euros to make up the difference. A request refused by Henrique, who warned Campos of the retention of the goalkeeper from Real Madrid only on September 1, the day the market closes. A large salary to pay and especially a difficult cohabitation to manage for Christophe Galtier, the calculation made by the businessman was counterproductive at all levels.
Another anecdote reported by L’Equipe, the lack of communication on the file Carlos Soler. In an attempt to attract the Spanish midfielder, Campos made an initial offer of 18 million euros with bonuses. Even before Valencia’s response, Henrique also sent a proposal for the captain of the club in the form of a loan with option to buy. An offensive that surprised the Spanish leaders, finally convinced by a third offer … similar to the first. An ubiquitous situation that shows how much the two men have not managed to agree throughout this period. It remains to be seen whether all the choices made by Henrique will bear fruit in the coming months.