BusinessDay

PSG vs Atlanta in revenue: Neymar earns as much as Atalanta’s squad

… As PSG spent more on Neymar, Kylian Mbappé transfers than Atalanta

The comparison between French champions Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) and Italian low-budget side Atalanta is the story of David vs. Goliath tales in the Champions League history.

PSG has spent a whopping sum of $392.7 million combined in the transfers of Neymar Jr. and Kylian Mbappé within the past three years than Atalanta has in its whole squad through the last 19 years — a mere $385.3 million for the better part of two decades.

According to Transfermarkt, PSG spent $148.5 million for Kylian Mbappé’s transfer from Monaco in 2018 and an even steeper $244.2 million for Neymar Jr. as he moved on from Spanish supergiant Barcelona in 2017.

Meanwhile, Atalanta has managed to thrive all season against teams with much deeper pockets without needing to spend remotely as much as the French side has since being taken over by new investors earlier in the decade.

In contrast, the Bergamo side spent a mere $4.92 million for Serie A’s assist wizard Papu Gómez to pull him from Metalist in Ukraine and an affordable $6.33 million for striker Josip Ilicic back in 2018.

Other acquisitions like Marten de Roon ($14.85 million) were a little more costly, but even he cost only a tenth of what Kylian Mbappé and 16 times less what PSG had to pay to reel in Neymar Jr. from Barcelona.

This only serves as a reminder that world football is more than superstar players, but also the development of a sound, structured team with excellent chemistry — something Atalanta has managed to show all year long throughout the UEFA Champions League.

According to reports from L’Equipe, PSG star Neymar is paid a basic salary of €30m, which goes up to approximately €36m after the addition of bonus clauses.

In complete contrast, Italian outlet La Gazzetta dello Sport reported that Atalanta’s highest-earners — Alejandro ‘Papu’ Gomez, Luis Muriel, and Duvan Zapata — are all on deals that see them earn €1.2m, going up to €1.8 with bonuses.

In fact, the Atalanta squad’s combined salary is reportedly between €33-36m, a figure which comparable to what Neymar alone is paid by PSG.

PSG’s second-highest earner is Kylian Mbappe, who is said to be earning around €16m annually, while Thiago Silva is close in behind at €11m. Neymar and Mbappe’s partner in attack, Mauro Icardi, earns a reported €5.7m a year.

This would mean that the combined total annual salary of the PSG’s front three — tallying up to roughly €55m — is a staggering eleven times that of what Atalanta’s front-three are paid, which is approximately €5m.

Neymar is currently the most expensive player in the world, after being purchased by PSG for an unprecedented transfer fee of €222m. PSG’s club-record signing costs a whopping eleven times higher than that of Atalanta’s. Colombian forward Luis Muriel arrived at the Gewiss Stadium from Sevilla in a €20.1m deal, which is the most that Atalanta have paid for a player in their history.

This disparity in financial firepower was of little relevance in the high-octane showdown between both clubs in Portugal which ended 2-1 in favour of PSG.

Despite their lavish spending, PSG are yet to even breach the final four of the UCL under their new ownership. Neymar would hope to take matters into his own hands and fire PSG to glory. With Mbappe also set to return after a miraculous recovery from his horrible injury in the French Cup final. They will be set to battle for a spot in the semi-final of the UCL.

After spending $1.42 billion in the last nine years, PSG reach the Champions League semifinal for the first time since 1995 Money-mouth face.

French champions PSG, led from the front by their talismanic forward Neymar Jr, are set to take on the biggest surprise in the UEFA Champions League, Atalanta on Wednesday.

The two clubs come from different backgrounds in every regard. PSG are the perennial champions of the land, which has been the case for almost a decade now, and are Champions League regulars despite not having won it since the turn of the century. Atalanta, on the other hand are playing their first-ever European campaign after an immensely successful 2018/19 domestic campaign saw them finish third.

However, despite various differences they face, perhaps none of them are more astonishing than the difference in their salaries and financial muscle.

PSG produced yet another memorable moment in the rich history of the UEFA Champions League after completing a late comeback against Atalanta on Wednesday.

The French champion had been trailing 1-0 as the clock ticked toward 90 minutes but two late goals from Marquinhos and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting turned the tie on its head.

It was heartbreak for tournament underdog Atalanta, which was competing in the Champions League for the first time in its history.

It had seemed Mario Pasalic’s first-half goal was going to be enough but, after a whirlwind three minutes, its players were left crestfallen as the referee blew the final whistle.

The club’s Cinderella run had boosted morale in its home city of Bergamo, which became the epicentre of the Covid-19 outbreak in February.

PSG were heavy favourites ahead of the tie with the disparity between the two clubs stark. Atalanta’s record signing, Luis Muriel, cost an estimated $21 million while PSG’s record signing, Neymar, cost some 12.5 times as much.

However, the far superior side on paper was wasteful for most of the night with Neymar missing two gilt-edge chances in the first half when it looked harder to miss.

It had seemed the team, brimming with talent after the introduction of Kylian Mbappe in the second half, had run out of ideas before striking late on.

“It was a crazy game, a tough game, against a tough opponent. It wasn’t easy. Neymar had a great game,” match winner Choupo-Moting told BT Sport after the match.

“I thought when I was coming on ‘we can’t lose, we can’t go home like this’. I was confident in myself and the team.”

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