Kylian Mbappé departure a massive economic blow for PSG

15 March 2024 3 min. read
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On the pitch, Kylian Mbappé is still delivering for Paris Saint Germain. His two world-class strikes against Real Sociedad in the Champions League helped the French champions secure an additional €10 million in prize money, as they pushed on to the quarter-final stage. But off the pitch, things are starting to look gloomy around the Parc des Princes.

With the old order of football shaped by Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo finally waning, as both ageing stars end their careers picking up large paycheques in backwater leagues, Mbappé is the clear heir to their throne.

A bravura performance in the 2022 World Cup, in which he became the first and only player since Geoff Hurst to score a hattrick in the final, cemented that reputation. And as such, with his contract ticking down, he has attracted huge interest from Europe’s elite clubs.

Kylian Mbappé departure a massive economic blow for PSG

With Mbappé looking to test himself in a more competitive league, and to push for Champions League glory – something PSG have rarely threatened to provide him with, beyond managing to lose the Ligue 1 title to Lille for one season – that attention has seen him finally make the call the club have been dreading. And it is going to cost them.

A new study from Circle Strategy, a boutique French strategic consultancy, has put into stark contrast just how much Mbappé brings to the club, and how much Les Parisiens stand to lose when he exits this summer. Not least because, having paid €180 million for Mbappé in 2017, the club has now squandered multiple opportunities to cash in on their wantaway star.

Jean-Marc Liduena, CEO of Circle Strategy, said of the findings, “Nobody had yet measured the impact of Kylian Mbappé's departure from PSG. With a team of four consultants, we assessed the impact of his departure for PSG and for the entire football ecosystem. It is a pragmatic, factual analysis. Our job is not to speculate, but to objectively factualise.”

Mbappé has regularly sought to leave, and with his contract ticking down, French President Emanuel Macron has even attempted to keep him in France. But when it became clear those attempts were not going to work when 2024 came around, PSG attempted to avoid selling to a European rival, by floating a world-record sale to Saudi Arabia. It was however not a deal a player entering into his prime was interested in.

Kylian Mbappé departure a massive economic blow for PSG

Beyond an almost €200 million loss in transfer fees, however, PSG will take an even bigger hit when it comes to sponsorship, according to Circle Strategy. During his stay at the club, Mbappé has boosted jersey sales alone by 40%, while ticket revenue has grown by 67%, and broadcast rights have skyrocketed by €80 million.

As a result, the income of the club increased by 175%, and the value of the club has exploded from €800 million to €4 billion. Considering the club has still never won a European trophy, Mbappé’s power as an ambassador for PSG’s brand cannot be understated.

Liduena added, “Kylian Mbappé had an unprecedented economic impact for PSG, for Ligue 1, and even for France. His mega contract with PSG was very profitable, with almost €40 million in net value creation. It turns out that this player, so young, this shooting star who crossed the PSG sky, is irreplaceable. Certainly, €200 million of payroll will be released, but PSG must quickly find a new economic model.”