Can PSG really carry out their threat to leave the Parc des Princes?

Can PSG really carry out their threat to leave the Parc des Princes?

Paris, September 2032. While the flying cars have left the Parisian ring road to make way for pedestrians, in what now looks like a sort of vegetated New York High Line, the onlookers strolling there suddenly raise their eyes to a strange and threatening concrete building, pikes raised towards the sky, located Porte d’Auteuil, that nature ended up devouring little by little. Nostalgic, a father tells his children that at the time, this place was nevertheless the place to be in Paris, the one where Paris Saint-Germain resided, today relocated far, far, far, to the Karl-Olive Arena in Poissy.

By (barely) forcing our imagination, it is in substance of this dismal future that Paris Saint-Germain speaks in the press release, published on Saturday, following the refusal of the mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo to sell the Parc des Princes to the PSG and its Qatari shareholder QSI, the latest episode in a com war started in November between the two clans. “PSG and the Parc des Princes are part of the history and heritage of Paris. Everyone loses in the position taken by the mayor. Paris Saint-Germain is now forced to find alternative options to relocate the club (…). This is not the outcome the club, nor its supporters, were hoping for. The tone is serious and the sentence seems irrevocable. Yes, PSG will indeed leave its Parc des Princes in the near future.

The candidates come out of the woods

It was enough to trigger the fantasy machine. In the wake of this new spat, the candidates for hosting the new Rouge et Bleu stadium came out of the woods to lay out the red carpet for Nasser Al-Khelaïfi. While Karl Olive, the mayor of Poissy, which already hosts the brand new PSG training center, published a visual of what the new PSG enclosure could represent on his land, the mayor of Joinville-le-Pont made him also an application form on the airwaves of France Bleu Paris, evoking the Bois de Vincennes as a future place to live. At the other end of the line, Stéphane Pottier, founder of Venue Advisory, a company specializing in the management of stadiums and arenas, is fed up imagining such scenarios.

“We can always imagine everything and it is not factually impossible for PSG to move, only it would require a huge investment and a lot, a lot of time. We are talking about a project at least 8 or 10 years old, notes the one who collaborated on projects for new football stadiums in Lille, Bordeaux or Nice. I absolutely do not see them one day migrating to the Bois de Vincennes, it would not make much sense. Afterwards, there may rightly be applications from neighboring communities that have land and want to seize this opportunity. But there is a strong attachment of Qatar, QSI and PSG as an institution in Paris and the west of Paris. »

“PSG is the Park! “, proclaims the Collectif Ultras Paris

For now, supporters are divided on the issue. If some, like the Collectif Ultras Paris or the Parisii bloc, who deployed a banner “Our history is written here. Not in Saint-Denis, nor in Poissy “in front of the Park this weekend, are deeply opposed to a relocation of PSG, others are more undecided. Some recently mentioned to our colleagues from the Parisian the cases of Arsenal, Tottenham, Juventus or Atlético de Madrid, which ended up leaving their historic stadium to build larger and/or more modern enclosures.

“But all these clubs have remained in their historic district,” replies Stéphane Pottier. If the racecourse of Saint-Cloud, not far from the Park, was cited among the places likely to welcome the very hypothetical new home of PSG, the others are located several kilometers away. Can we seriously imagine the Parisian supporters agreeing to go to Saint-Denis, to the Stade de France, one of the projects mentioned in the event of departure from the Park, to see a match of their team? Not to mention that next to the Dionysian enclosure, certainly large but without any soul, the Parc des Princes next door looks like a mythical place from which, in reality, no one wants to move.

A price difficult to estimate

Only here, to stay there and carry out the necessary expansion and modernization work, the PSG wishes to be the owner of the premises. What Stéphane Pottier understands perfectly. “It’s like when you rent an apartment or a house, you’re not ready to make the same investments there as when you own it. What would be the interest of Paris Saint-Germain to invest 300, 400 or 500 million in a property that does not belong to it? It doesn’t make much economic sense. »

However, after a first offer (ridiculous, let’s say it) up to 40 million euros, the PSG was opposed to an end of inadmissibility on the part of the City of Paris, which estimates, it, its well over 350 million euros. How much is it actually worth? Difficult to judge as this type of transaction is not common. According to another study by the domains service cited by The Team, we are talking about a sum of 200 million euros which could then serve as a benchmark for any future transaction. Unless the Paris City Hall persists in the hard line it has set in recent days, it which would however have nothing to gain from the departure of PSG in the suburbs.

“Perhaps it will be necessary to be a little more creative than a simple sale, thinks the founder of Venture Advisory. The Mayor opened the door a little by evoking the extension of the agreement for the occupation of the estate. But there may be other legal tools that give quasi-ownership of the Parc des Princes to PSG and QSI. I remain convinced that everyone will recover around the table. The City of Paris has no interest in letting PSG leave the Park and PSG itself has no interest in leaving its stadium. . As assured by the deputy mayor of Paris David Belliard on RMC, Monday morning, “we are in a game of poker liar”. It remains to be seen who of NAK or Anne Hidalgo has the best game in hand.