Barcelona selling its assets to fund its summer transfer activity was not fair, according to Paris St. Germain president Nasser Al-Khelaifi.
The debt-riddled Catalan club made the hotly-debated decision to sell future television rights and a large amount of their digital content arm to investment funds and even a crypto firm.
The board’s financial moves allowed Barcelona to splash an eye-watering $150 million on a host of star players including Robert Lewandowski, Raphinha, and Jules Kounde.
Al-Khelaifi condemned the dealings and suggested that a UEFA probe into the matter would happen.
“Is this fair? No, it’s not fair… Is it legal? I’m not sure,” Al-Khelaifi said in an interview with Politico published on Wednesday.
“If they allow them, others will do the same. UEFA of course have their own [financial] regulations. For sure they’re going to look at everything.”
Al-Khelaifi’s comments follow his thinly-veiled dig at Barcelona during a conversation with bosses of top European clubs on Friday. “The new financial sustainability rules are a positive development,” the Qatari tycoon explained. “But we need to be careful. Dangerous levels of debt and magical equity deals are not a sustainable path.”
Barca’s gross debt still stood at over €1 billion in the last publicly available accounts.
Barcelona declined to comment in response Politoco’s interview, but UEFA issued a statement to say: “All clubs participating in UEFA club competitions are monitored in accordance with UEFA Club Licensing and Financial Sustainability Regulations. Decisions on compliance are taken by the independent Club Financial Control Body (CFCB).”
Laporta was happy to shed a certain amount of light on Barcelona’s financial predicament over the summer, most notably telling ESPN following the £42.5m signing of Robert Lewandowski from Bayern Munich : “We’ve had to move fast. The TV rights were sold, 25 per cent of them, and that has added important revenue.
“The club is on path to being sound; financially the club is better with the money that’s come in, and we’ve been able to pay back €100m of the credit we had through Goldman Sachs. What’s more, it needs to be said, the club is back to being sound economically, but we have to work harder to increase our earnings, not from selling shares but not by profiting through them.”