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BeIN Media Group Chairman Nasser Ghanem Al-Khelaifi has been named the most influential figure in the global sports industry in the year ahead by London-based media company SportsPro.
Khelaifi, who is the Chairman of the European Club Association (ECA) and the President of Paris Saint-Germain, tops the list of SportsPro’s prestigious “Ten Influencers 2022” annual list.
He has been featured in the list for his efforts towards driving and shaping the global sports agenda in the year ahead, positioned alongside sports leaders such as President and Chief Executive of Discovery, David Zaslav.
SportsPro highlighted Khelaifi’s role in PSG acquiring Lionel Messi, “into a league to which his broadcasting company BeIN Media Group also holds the television rights in several markets”
“In fact, it would be fair to suggest that a decent portion of the money that now flows through soccer can be traced back to the various businesses helmed by Al-Khelaifi, who took the top job at the Parc des Princes in 2011.
“A central figure in the ongoing struggle for power at the highest level of soccer, the 48-year-old was among those to rally against the short-lived formation of a breakaway super league, a stance that later saw him elevated to the role of chairman at the European Club Association (ECA). That job, coupled with his position on the Uefa executive committee, will no doubt give Al-Khelaifi a significant say in the shape of European soccer moving forward – a task likely to involve protecting PSG’s interests from those of the remaining rebel super league clubs.
“With a Fifa World Cup in his home country on the horizon, Al-Khelaifi will also be keen to defend Qatar’s interests from the incursion of Saudi Arabia, whose own recent investments into sport and media have the potential to reignite the pair’s tussle for supremacy in the Middle East.
“Indeed, there are plenty of plates to be spun. If 2021 was the year that Al-Khelaifi seized even more power, then 2022 will be about finding out how he intends to use it.”

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