Imagine, if you will, a soccer dinner party that includes so much wealth that the gross domestic product of the room could rescue Greece from financial ruin. A meal of such soccer opulence that the use of silverware would be eschewed in favor of players from mid-table teams feeding the attendees by hand. A feast of such grand scale that the evening’s patrons could have an actual Jurassic Park built, specifically so private chefs could fly in and serve the freshest and most succulent of brontosaurus meats. This, I imagine, was last night’s dinner between executives from Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid.
Today, PSG and Real Madrid will meet at Parc des Princes in Champions League combat, but last night leadership from both sides broke bread like kings—FIFA Fair Play-dodging, international TV contract cash-burning kings. In what PSG described as “a fine meal at an illustrious Parisian restaurant,” CEO and Chairman Nasser Al Khelaifi and a flock of delegates welcomed Madrid chairman Florentino Perez and his #squad, where they probably dined on breads with more grains than you could ever fathom and laughed at Roman Abramovich for operating a 2014 yacht that didn’t include the new near-orbit personal spacecraft option. “Mourinho-enabling degenerate!” Perez probably cried, as he asked Gareth Bale to flag down a server to fetch him another $35,000 serving of pudding.
Rich people fucking love pudding.
There was much champagne pouring on the night. It tasted like corporate synergy and contained the cure for all manner of communicable diseases that commonly afflict the poor, like relegation. The biggest laugh of the night came early on from Al Khelaifi and Perez as they dabbed their lobster bisque-spackled mouths and realized that the details of Angel Di Maria’s Manchester United contract was printed on their Egyptian cloth napkins. Oh, how they did chuckle!
Obviously, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Cristiano Ronaldo were invited, but neither contributed much to the table conversation as they each demanded their own private wings of the hotel, where they would each have their dinners served by mutes with strict “no touching or eye contact” orders.
Edinson Cavani nearly killed the festive mood of the evening, as no matter how good the meal was, he could do nothing but complain that he was too far from the center of the table, and remind Al Khelaifi that Arsenal has been inviting him to dinner since last summer and one of these nights, he just may accept their offer.
No one had more fun than Karim Benzema, who refused to take his feet of the table, and graced the room with a spot-on rendition of Will Smith’s wine glass concerto from the first episode of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
It was a night for the ages. A few delegates from UEFA were in attendance, no doubt in a bureaucratic capacity, making sure both clubs were keeping in line with nonsensical financial guidelines. Their stay wouldn’t last long, as an agent that represented more than half of PSG and Real Madrid’s rosters stuffed the UEFA reps’ pockets with all of the shrimp that had fallen on the floor, patted them on the back, and sent them on their way.
Over all, it was a special night for the clubs and European soccer overall. Rumors have swirled that Qatar Sports Investments—owners of hosts PSG—passed off the bill to a group of migrant workers from Nepal, but hard evidence is yet to surface.