Looking for clubs to invest in, QSI, owner of PSG, has put Sampdoria in its sights and is in advanced discussions with its owner, Massimo Ferrero. The Qatari fund would join forces with ASER Ventures, which already has Leeds United in its portfolio and which would then be the new majority shareholder of the Genoese club, bottom of Serie A and now mathematically relegated to the lower level. Nasser al-Khelaïfi would find Jesé, the Spanish striker is the symbol of the disastrous sporting situation of Sampdoria which recruited him in January, when he was without a club, to try to reverse an irreversible situation.
The Genoa club has already returned to Serie B twice in its recent history – in 1999 and 2011 – but it had never feared bankruptcy. This time, the financial situation is delicate and abruptly worsened at the beginning of December 2021 when Ferrero was arrested for a bankruptcy case concerning other companies. His incarceration lasted two weeks and he was then placed under house arrest for several months.
His legal setbacks forced him to resign from his position as president, since occupied by Marco Lanna, old glory of Sampdoria champion of Italy in 1991. Gianluca Vialli, emblematic scorer of that time, died on January 7 and was one of those who tried to convince a contractor to save the Blucerchiati. On sale for more than a year, there is still no buyer for the club.
Debts estimated at 200 million euros
Ferrero still tries to stick around. On October 17, 2022, he tried to return to the Stadio Luigi-Ferraris for the first time but had to quickly leave the premises – protected by a security service – after a tough dispute. We are far from the extravagant character who had amused in its beginnings, between grimaces and rowdy declarations. “The fans are conditioned by the media storm against me. But they will understand that with my personality, my exaggerations, my folklore, the Samp has always been competitive…”he recently told the Gazzetta dello Sport.
According to the Genoa court, the debts would amount to around 200 million euros while the players made an effort by giving up their salary for the month of December. Italian institutions are not insensitive. At its last board meeting, the Lega guaranteed the advance payment of 40% of the guaranteed amount to the relegated clubs.
This represents a windfall of 10 million euros for Sampdoria, which will allow it to end the season a little more calmly before the next deadlines which are fast approaching, in particular that of June 20 to register for the next Championship of Serie B. This will require financial guarantees. They will necessarily come from a new owner, the duo QSI-Aser Ventures or Merlyn Partners of Alessandro Barnaba who controls LOSC.