Football: Bayern Munich president rails at overinflated transfer market

"In my opinion, there is no player in the world worth €100 million," said Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness on Wednesday (Aug 30).
"In my opinion, there is no player in the world worth €100 million," said Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness on Wednesday (Aug 30). PHOTO: AFP

BERLIN (REUTERS) - The huge increase in football transfer fees is both dangerous for the game and risks alienating fans, Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness said on Wednesday.

The world transfer record was shattered this month when Brazilian forward Neymar moved from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) in a deal worth €222 million (S$359 million), more than double the previous highest price paid for a player.

The staggering spending did not stop there, however, and French forward Ousmane Dembele then joined Barca from Borussia Dortmund last week, with his move costing up to €150 million, including bonuses, the second highest deal in football history.

Monaco forward Kylian Mbappe has also been linked in the media with a move to PSG in a deal reported to be worth €180 million.

"In my opinion, there is no player in the world worth €100 million," Hoeness told SportBild magazine.

"I do not want to buy a player for €100 million even if I had the money. That would be too much of a waste of money," said Hoeness, who reclaimed the Bayern presidency last year after serving a prison term for tax evasion.

 

The Bavarian club, five-time European champions, are among the richest football clubs in the world with an annual turnover of more than €500 million and a fixed deposit account bulging with almost €200 million.

"We have reached a point where we have to be damned careful. Because there is a point where maybe the fan has had enough," he added.

"In all honesty, it is time to go back to proportionality. For a long time, there was fear of agents, of players. Now we have to say, 'Enough is enough'."

Bayern broke their own club transfer record this summer when they signed 23-year-old Frenchman Corentin Tolisso for €41.5 million from Lyon.

The club's chief executive officer Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has also criticised inflated transfer fees, saying he would prefer a stadium to signing Neymar for the amount PSG paid for him.