Lyon’s soon-to-be owner John Textor has criticized the way Ligue 1 rivals Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) make money.
The Parisiens have enjoyed unprecedented domestic success since they were taken over by Qatar Sports Investments, who made them one of the richest clubs in world football.
Under their current owners, PSG have won the French league title eight times and reached the final of the Champions League. They also paid a world-record fee for Neymar (€222 million) and gave enormous wage packages to the likes of Kylian Mbappe and Lionel Messi.
However, Textor, who will initally own 66% of Lyon, has claimed that he doesn’t like the Qatari project. The part-Crystal Palace owner told a press conference (as transcribed by L’Equipe):
“We want to do something unique. I’m leaving [Jean-Michel Aulas] a lot of freedom because he is very knowledgeable about football and the French market, he knows the business well. I don’t like projects like PSG’s. If we continue to do what Jean-Michel has for several years and that we bring in entertainment and technology, we’ll be able to earn more money than with a Qatari investor.”
“I’ve seen people in Brazil with Crystal Palace shirts and people with Botafogo tops on in a London pub. That’s what I want with Lyon, that there be a community between the fans. Here, Aulas has done a great job with football, basketball all of the infrastructure you see and the women’s team. For us in the United States, that’s amazing. We’re bringing in money with Jamie [Salter] and Bill Foley, two friends. We’re investing with our own money.”
PSG reportedly ‘ready to let Neymar go this summer’
The Brazilian superstar has enjoyed a mixed career at the Parc des Princes since joining from Barcelona in 2017 for a deal worth over €200 million.
The 30-year-old forward has scored 100 goals in 144 appearances for the French giants. However, he has failed to help his side claim the Champions League, which has been the primary goal of the Qatari ownership since their arrival.
Neymar was even jeered by his own supporters following his team’s humiliating exit from Europe against Real Madrid last term.
According to Foot Mercato journalist Santi Aouna, the Ligue 1 champions are willing to sell the Brazilian international should a satisfactory offer come in, with new Football Advisor Luis Campos backing the decision.