Arsene Wenger said 12 months ago that it wouldn’t be long until a £200m player was signed after Paul Pogba joined Manchester United for £89.5m. It appears he’s been proven true.
Barcelona forward Neymar looks set to sign for Paris Saint-Germain for around £198.95M this summer less than a year after Wenger made such claims, highlighting the inflation engulfing football currently and the need marquee signings from marketing standpoint.
In the summer of 2016, Manchester United made former Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba their world record signing and Wenger knew where it would soon lead for European clubs. When asked how long it could take for players to be sold for £150m or £200m, he said to the Evening Standard: “Not long.”
“I have said that since I have been in the game at some point it has to stop, but as long as football continues to develop and become more popular more money will come in.
“What is interesting to see is that today, you have a local business and you just want to survive or you have a world business and the money comes in, whether it is Google, Facebook, football or any other sport, they are worldwide so you can’t set any limitations in the income.”
With super-rich corporations now looking to capitalise on football for their own marketing needs, there is likely to be more lucrative deals in the coming seasons. Neymar’s £198.95m transfer sets a new record on all fronts but is likely to be one of many deals given rich owners can bankroll the asking price.
Arsenal themselves were linked with a £125m bid for Monaco’s Kylian Mbappe this summer but little came from the reported offer. The player has since told Monaco he wants to leave so some crazy figures are likely to be attached to the teenager this summer.