The Argentine icon was unable to see fresh terms put in place at Barcelona, but an agreement has been reached at Parc des Princes
Lionel Messi’s historic contract at Paris Saint-Germain has seen the Argentine given a number of “fan tokens”, with Ligue 1 giants using cryptocurrency to partly fund a stunning deal.
A six-time Ballon d’Or winner has bid an emotional farewell to Barcelona, with financial issues at Camp Nou preventing the Argentine from committing to the only club side he has represented at senior level.
The Blaugrana’s loss has been PSG’s gain, with an ambitious and big-spending outfit in the French capital pulling off a remarkable coup as they add an all-time great to an already star-studded squad.
What has been said?
Messi has been handed a lucrative two-year contract at Parc des Princes, with PSG stating on the club’s official website on how they have put that deal in place: “In a world first for such a high-profile signing, Leo Messi received a large number of ‘$PSG Fan Tokens’.
“The inclusion of the $PSG Fan Tokens in the player’s welcome package instantly ties him with millions of Paris Saint-Germain fans around the world. The move further positions Paris Saint-Germain as one of the most innovative and avant-garde sports franchises in the world.
“Token implementation comes as a great illustration of the way the club is constantly finding ways to increase and diversify its revenue streams to continue developing as a global brand.
“In 2018, Paris Saint-Germain made a pioneering step into the world of blockchain, becoming the first sports franchise to partner with Socios.com. Since then, Paris Saint-Germain and Socios.com have been working side by side to capitalize on this new and unique way to connect the club with the fans, and the best is yet to come. For millions of PSG supporters around the world, Fan Tokens have become a creative way to engage with the rouge & bleu.
“Paris Saint-Germain fans have been very active on Socios.com, taking advantage of a host of engagement opportunities on the app. Through $PSG Fan Tokens, fans worldwide get the opportunity to choose a motivational message on the wall of the dressing room before a key game, the goal of the geason, or the winners of the club’s end of season awards. Fans have also experienced unique, personal video calls from first team stars via the platform, and even more exciting activations are planned for the coming weeks and months.
“The hype surrounding the latest signings in the club’s busy summer transfer window created a huge surge of interest in $PSG Fan Tokens, with trading volumes exceeding $1.2 billion in the days preceding the move.”
Are PSG adhering to Financial Fair Play?
Mauricio Pochettino’s side have added Messi, Sergio Ramos, Gianluigi Donnarumma, Georginio Wijnaldum and Achraf Hakimi to their ranks this summer.
They have, however, only had to pay a fee for the last entry on that list, with four proven international performers acquired as free agents.
That is helping them to adhere to Financial Fair Play regulations, with the club also making the most of other opportunities – such as cryptocurrency – in order to strengthen without breaching UEFA-imposed rules on spending.
Marc Armstrong, chief partnerships officer at PSG, has said of the deal for Messi: “Fully embracing Socios.com and $PSG Fan Tokens has proved a massive success for the Club. We have been able to engage with a new global audience, creating a significant digital revenue stream.”
Alexandre Dreyfus, CEO of Chiliz and Socios.com, added: “Paris Saint-Germain are reaping the rewards of their bold approach and I believe this could be the start of a new trend as Fan Tokens and Socios.com play an increasingly prominent role across sport at the very highest level.”