Paris Saint-Germain might have secured the spine to their midfield by paying €60 million release clause and convincing Manuel Ugarte to come to the French capital.
Furthermore, the 2022-23 Ligue 1 champions beat out Chelsea, who were also in the mix for the 22-year-old. Sporting Lisbon president Frederico Varandas spoke with Record (h/t Daily Mail) about the transfer that resulted in the Uruguayan selecting PSG as his next club.
“One club we already know as he himself said, PSG… Chelsea? I won’t comment,” Varandas said. “Two clubs beat the value of the clause. They made him proposals from the point of view of career and salary, first he opted for one, then changed his mind for another, as is normal.
“We said the conditions that would be the value of the clause and other costs that we interpret that the buying club has to assume. It is not yet black and white with PSG; there is another club willing to give this value.
“PSG knows the conditions. We will also only close [the deal] after July 1st, with the 2023-24 fiscal year. Ugarte has two clubs that want him, he preferred PSG. The decision is at PSG.”
Ugarte also confirmed his move to the French capital in an interview with Record as the midfielder is very happy about his move to the French capital.
“The truth is that we now have to rest a bit and start everything at PSG,” Ugarte said. “I’m going to a giant club, I haven’t realized it yet, but I’m going to try to break everything. It’s true that Messi is leaving. It would have been amazing to play with him, but that’s football. I am very happy.”
The signing of Ugarte is also a step toward finally filling that defensive midfielder role on PSG. The Ligue 1 side hasn’t filled the shoes left by Thiago Motta when he left in 2018. However, it seems sporting advisor Luis Campos is rolling the dice and betting on Ugarte to be that defensive engine in the midfield.