Battle Begins Between Abu Dhabi Controlled Man City And Qatar Backed PSG For Messi

Claiming domestic titles and cups have not been a problem for both Manchester City and PSG in their respective leagues but the UEFA Champions League is what they want to conquer.

With the possibility of signing Lionel Messi very much a reality now after the striker informed FC Barcelona of his intention to exit Camp Nou, the lure of bringing the Argentine to Paris or Manchester could trigger an added level of friction between Qatar (PSG) and UAE (City) with relationships between both states already fraught and volatile.

City are backed by the Emirates with owner Mansour bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan a member of the Abu Dhabi royal family.

Under his guidance and with the creation of the City Football Group, the company controls Melbourne City and New York City along with holding interests in the likes of Yokohama, Montevideo City, Lommel SK, Mumbai City and Girona.

The club have spent approximately 1,924 million euro on player acquisitions since his arrival at the club in 2008 with the first star signing being Brazilian playmaker Robinho for 43M€.

PSG are owned by the Emir of Qatar Tamin bin Hamad Al Thani who acquired the Ligue 1 side in 2011 via the QIA (Qatar Investment Authority).

Qatar is set to the host the 2022 FIFA World Cup and in the space of nine years, the club have spent 1,304 million euro on big name stars with the 2017 acquisition of Neymar Jr. from Barcelona for a sum of 222 million euro still the highest transfer in the history of the game.

SEE ALSO | Messi’s Agent Gives Clarity On His Next Club Despite Man Utd, Man City Links

Both clubs see Messi as both a viable source of revenue through merchandise and sponsorship but feel the Argentine could be instrumental in delivering the cherished Champions League trophy.

This article was most recently revised and updated 4 years ago