To an average observer, it would be tough to differentiate between Chelsea and their Billions and PSG and their Billions, one built with Russian money and the other with Qatari, but as the two line up tonight in what promises to be an eventful and insightful look at how the two big spenders have splashed their cash to get to this point, we break down both sides financial clout over the past few seasons to determine just how their spending has brought success.
With the importance and value placed on the newly introduced UEFA Financial Fair Play Regulations (FFP), implemented in 2012 after being agreed in principle in 2009. We took a look at each clubs key signings since becoming one of the richest sides on the planet, as well as their respective trophy hauls, to see if we can get a clearer look at just who it is that has used their money better and wiser ahead of tonight’s crucial tie.
Chelsea – (Since Russian investment in 2003)
Barclays Premier League – 2004/2005 – 2005/2006 – 2009/2010
FA Cup – 2006/2007 – 2008/2009 – 2009/2010 – 2011/2012
Football League Cup – 2004/2005 – 2006/2007 – 2014/2015
UEFA Champions League – 2011/12
UEFA Europa League – 2012/2013
PSG – (Since Qatari investment in 2011)
Ligue 1 – 2012/2013 – 2013/2014
Coupe de la Ligue – 2013/2014
Trophee des Champions – 2013 – 2014
Claude Makelele – £16million – Real Madrid
Signed in the summer of 2003 and one of the first marquee transfers under new ownership, Claude Makelele spent five years in West London, during which time he claimed two consecutive Premier League crowns, two League Cups and an F.A Cup before, somewhat ironically, being released by Chelsea only to join PSG in July 2008 on a free transfer. During Makelele’s time at Stamford Bridge he established himself as one of the best defensive midfield players in world football and endeared himself to the West London faithful in such a way that his name is sung out in 2015.
Didier Drogba – £24million – Marseille
The capture of Didier Drogba in the summer of 2004 would have an effect on Chelsea football club so drastic that he has since been re-signed by the club in the last 12 months after a two-year spell away from the club and time in both Shanghai and Turkey. Whilst in West London Didier won pretty much everything with Chelsea including; three Premier League titles, four F.A Cups, three League cups and a more than crucial role in Chelsea’s 2011-12 Champions League success, a game in which Didier scored not only the equalizing goal but the winning penalty. A feat that landed Didier in Chelsea folk history as one of the greatest players to have graced the turf at Stamford Bridge and indeed, the Premier League itself.
Eden Hazard – £32million – Lille
Eden Hazard’s arrival at Stamford Bridge was somewhat of a coup for Chelsea with the former Lille man attracting attention from the biggest clubs on the planet after claiming the UNFP Player of the year award for two consecutive seasons. Since touching turf in London, Eden has won the UEFA Europa League and the League Cup, whilst simultaneously propelling himself into the elite list of the best players in the division and in many critics opinion, the world. Still only 24 years old, Chelsea managed to persuade Hazard to sign a five-year contract extension in February of this year, potentially keeping the young Belgian superstar at the club until 2020.
Paris Saint Germain
Marco Verratti – £10million – Delfino Pescara
Plucked from the obscurity of Pescara and Italian Serie B football, Marco Veratti remains one of the more astute signings of the past few years. The 22-year-old, Italian midfielder left his boyhood club for the glamour of Paris in July 2012 on a five-year deal and has since established himself as a staple in the PSG set-up. With just under 100 professional appearances for his new club, Verratti has already helped the rich Parisian side claim two consecutive Ligue 1 championships aswell as the Coupe de la Ligue and Trophee des Champions. Since bursting onto the mainstream in the iconic PSG blue, Verratti has become a regular in the Italy squad and one of the most hotly tipped young prospects on the planet.
Thiago Motta – £10million – Inter Milan
The signing of Thiago Motta in January of 2012 came as a huge surprise to football fans across the world as it wasn’t that long before that then Inter Milan coach Claudio Ranieri went out of his way to state that he was confident that the Brazilian would remain at the Italian club despite interest from a host of potential new clubs. Once PSG got their man, Motta stated that it had been his dream to play fro the Parisian side in hopes of emulating the success’ of the Brailian icons who had donned the PSG shirt in the past. Since arriving in Paris, Motta has claimed two Ligue 1 titles, two Trophee des Champions and one Coupe de la Ligue. To further show his importance to the club, Motta was given a contract extension at the age of 31 that woud keep him at the clb until at least 2016.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic – £18million – A.C Milan
Before signing for current club PSG in 2012, Zlatan was strongly considered to be one of the best players on the planet, a status he has managed to hold onto to this day. Signed for a staggeringly low £18million, Zlatan was given a colossal three-year contract that would see him earn €14million a year including bonuses. Zlatan has been seen as the icon of PSG since his move and has remained the face of the club, despite now being 33-years-old. On top of a truly phenomenal goal-scoring record at his new French club, the famously outspoken and arrogant Swede has also helped his side to two Ligue 1 titles, two Trophee des Champions and one Coupe de la Ligue as well as the individual accolades of the FIFA Puskas Award in 2012, two Ligue 1 player of the year awards and a 2012 Golden Foot.