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Gulf derby between princes and sheikhs – Corriere.it

from Stefano Montefiore, reporter from Paris

The Champions League showdown cannot be a competition like any other, between limitless fortunes and power games: a kind of Persian Gulf club.

tuesday secretAt the Parc des Princes in Paris The MNM trio (Messi – Neymar – Mbappe) is also back Golfico, the challenge between the two greats of European football, a kind of clasico in the Persian Gulf.

Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City owe their fortunes to the princes Qatar and Abu Dhabi (one of the seven United Arab Emirates), which also convey a deep political rivalry to the football field.

The UAE was the first to invest Gulf oil revenues in Western sports in 2008, with the Adug Fund, owned by Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed, a member of the ruling family of Abu Dhabi.

Like Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich, who bought debt-laden Chelsea to a major club, Sheikh bin Zayed reached the Premier League and within four years led Manchester City to win the championship, for the first time in 44 years.

After a brief period, In 2011, Qatar Sports Investment Fundowned by the prince Tamim Ben Hamad Al-Thani, enters European football by buying Paris Saint-Germain. In this case, it is the gas fields in Qatar that indirectly finance the transformation of a team that has not won the French championship for nearly twenty years.

Qatar and the small but very rich Emirates see the successes of Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City as a way to nurture their international image. Expand influence outside the Middle East, and exercise a soft power Which uses Kylian Mbappe and Jack Grealish goals instead of armies. The competition between Qatar and the UAE was in danger of becoming Difficult
when In 2017, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the UAE themselves cut diplomatic ties and announced a ban on Qatar
Accused of supporting the Arab Spring movements, the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamists. The crisis returned at the beginning of January 2021 thanks to the mediation of Kuwait and above all the will of the United States, concern about seeing Qatar get too close, in response, to Iran and Turkey.

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The return match will be held on Tuesday evening, with Messi playing, after injury, from the start, and the two quarrelsome stars Mbabbe and Neymar.

Manchester City Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed does not only watch the match: according todaily Mail
It would give the Manchester City executives a mandate Grab – at any cost – Mbapp from Paris Saint-Germain, To succeed where Real Madrid failed, and to give Qatar the harshest slap.

Sep 27, 2021 (change on Sep 27, 2021 | 23:19)

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