The £1BILLION game: PSG and Man City are football’s biggest spenders and their embarrassment of riches will be on full display in Paris tonight… from £167m Kylian Mbappe to a City defence worth £191m
- Paris Saint-Germain host Manchester City in the Champions League last four
- It is a collision of super teams with the two sides among the biggest spenders
- The two starting line-ups could combine to be worth more in fees than £1billion
- Sportsmail looks at both teams ahead of their meeting at the Parc des Princes
No clubs in Europe have mobilised themselves with cash quite like Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City.
Hundreds of millions have been spent to build super teams capable of going all the way in the Champions League and now they meet in the last four.
For PSG, owned by the state of Qatar, their resources are plentiful so long as oil continues to sell and there is no sign of money drying up.
Paris Saint-Germain have an attack including £198m Neymar (left) and £167m Kylian Mbappe
City’s centre back partnership of Ruben Dias (left) and John Stones is worth more than £100m
They made it all the way to last season’s final, only to trip up on the big stage in defeat to Bayern Munich.
It is a similar situation at City with their Abu Dhabi owners.
They are so well remunerated through their own oil investments in Abu Dhabi and they are so healthy in their accounts it was no surprise to see City among the first to backtrack from a European Super League.
For City this is new ground in reaching a semi-final under Pep Guardiola and now they stand as favourites to win it all.
Sheikh Mansour (centre) has made sure money has never been an issue at Manchester City
PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi (right) oversees Qatar’s ownership of the French champions
Much of City’s focus and spending has been on their defence and Guardiola did not hesitate last summer to spend a club record £64million on Ruben Dias from Benfica.
Dias has proven a revelation in his first season in England and alongside defensive partner John Stones, who cost £47.5m when he joined from Everton in 2016, City have looked much more solid in Europe than in recent years.
That centre back pairing of more than £100m will need to be worth every penny against the most expensive front line ever assembled.
PSG have long faced accusations of being top heavy and when the figures are broken down it is difficult to argue.
Kylian Mbappe, who initially joined on loan from Monaco as a way to circumvent Financial Fair Play rules, cost the Parisians £167m but it is his team-mate that holds the world record transfer fee.
Neymar’s £198m release clause at Barcelona seemed impossible to meet until PSG did just that in 2017 to stun the footballing world.
If that firepower was not enough, PSG boss Mauricio Pochettino will also call upon Angel Di Maria.
PSG PREDICTED XI
NAVAS – £14m
DIALLO – £29m
MARQUINHOS – £27m
KIMPEMBE – ACADEMY/FREE
DAGBA – ACADEMY/FREE
PAREDES – £35m
GUEYE – £30m
DI MARIA – £44.3m
DRAXLER – £30m
NEYMAR – £198m
MBAPPE – £167m
TOTAL COST – £574.3MILLION
CITY PREDICTED XI
EDERSON – £35m
WALKER – £54m
STONES – £47.5m
DIAS – £64m
CANCELO – £26m
RODRI – £62.6m
DE BRUYNE – £54m
GUNDOGAN – £21m
MAHREZ – £60m
FODEN – ACADEMY/FREE
JESUS – £27m
TOTAL COST – £451.1MILLION
Kevin De Bruyne cost City £54m but he has proven worth every penny since he arrived
Leandro Paredes is PSG’s £35m midfield stopper and he will try to keep De Bruyne quiet
The Argentine winger was one of the stars of the previous round and has gone back to his best after ending his dismal spell at Manchester United in a £44.3m move in 2015.
A £400m strike force is the envy of every side across Europe and PSG have bet big on their stars to deliver the ultimate prize in European football after they froze against Bayern a year ago.
It is midfield where City have the edge in spending, with Rodri, Ilkay Gundogan and Kevin De Bruyne costing a combined £137.6m.
That is greater than the trio of Leandro Paredes, Idrissa Gueye and Julian Draxler – combining fees for £95m – that Pochettino will call upon.
It will likely prove a fascinating tactical battle with PSG looking to reduce the effectiveness of City’s midfield while Guardiola’s side task themselves with keeping Neymar, Mbappe and Di Maria quiet.
Lots of attention will be on the form of the Keylor Navas (left) and Ederson (right) in goal
In Sportsmail’s expected line-ups, PSG will go with two Academy talents from the start in full-back Colin Dagba and centre back Presnel Kimpembe.
Both graduated from PSG’s B team in recent years and have become trusted members of an ever-changing back four.
For City, it will just be man-of-the-moment Phil Foden that they can point to as an academy developed starter.
Foden could well be the difference maker for City despite not hammering the club accounts.
It was the Stockport-born midfielder who netted in both legs of their quarter-final against Borussia Dortmund and PSG will not underestimate him due to his lack of a huge transfer fee.
In goal it is two Latin Americans going head-to-head with £35m Brazilian goalkeeper Ederson keeping watch for City while Costa Rica’s Keylor Navas – who cost £15m from Real Madrid – PSG’s No 1.
Phil Foden (right) is likely to be the only Man City starter that did not require a transfer fee
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