Nasser Al-Khelaifi has spoken on plans to develop and nurture young talent whilst hailing the progress the club has made under the ownership of QSI.
In an interview with L’Equipe, the President of the club stated the intent to find the new ‘Lionel Messi’ but knows the risk of making big investments that don’t pay off.
“Honestly, today we’re very satisfied with the performances of the players that we have.” he told.
“Unless there’s an opportunity, we’re not working to bring more in this winter. We’re still looking for the new (Lionel) Messi. Investment will be made on young talented players but at that age, you can never guarantee that they’ll become high-calibre players. At the moment, we have (Javier) Pastore and other players who improve the team, who don’t just play for themselves. Pastore is a new Messi, but there could be others. He could reach that level, just as the others players in the team could reach the top level.”
He then went on to reveal the staggering improvements off the pitch in terms of merchandise sales. Sales of replica shirts have risen by 180% compared to this time last year. The club also has the best average attendance of all 20 clubs in Ligue 1 with 41,000.
Although Al-Khelaifi is happy with how things are going, he says it is still early days and much more work is needed to be done.
“We’re satisfied with the results. We’ve reached the first stage of our project and everything’s going as planned. But we’re here long-term and it’s too early to judge us.
“We can’t say if it’s a success or not yet but we’re delighted by what we’ve achieved so far, with the fans, the atmosphere in the stadium, the merchandising, the shirt sales.
“We’re proud of all of that. We’ve not made any mistakes, thanks to God, but it could happen. Who doesn’t make any?”