The Gulf boycott of Qatar doesn't prevent Qatar Sports Investments from investing money abroad in soccer, and it's set to spent almost $500 million -- yes, half a billion dollars -- on one player. Neymar
's record-breaking deal from Barcelona to Paris St. Germain, which Qatar Sports Investments owns, includes a transfer fee of 222 million euros (almost $250 million) and a
similar amount in salary paid over five years.
Neymar flew to Porto on Wednesday for a quick trip to meet fellow Brazilian Maxwell
, the new PSG assistant sports director, and the
PSG team doctor for a physical.
Neymar returned to Barcelona later in the day, but teammate Lionel Messi
had already said goodbye on social media.
often had crazy figures written into buyout clauses in their contracts, but Barca never figured anyone would take it up on the Neymar buyout clause.
It is not happy with that PSG pounced
and has reportedly insisted that the French club pay the buyout fee in full, as opposed to in payments over several years. La Liga president Javier Tebas
also threatened to report PSG to
UEFA for breaking its Financial Fair Play rules if PSG signed Neymar.
The argument is that Neymar will reportedly become an ambassador for Qatar’s World Cup 2022 effort and paid a
fee that will help him pay his buyout clause.
PSG had previously violated Financial Fair Play rules for a deal with a Qatari tourism agency that paid the French club much more than the
publicity was worth. Ironically, Qatar Airways was the jersey sponsor of Barcelona until it was replaced by Japan's leading e-commerce company, Rakuten, this summer.
Neymar posted an
excerpt from the New Testament (Philippians 4:11) on his Instagram account: "I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is
to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content ... whether living in plenty or in want.