PARIS — Paris Saint-Germain broke the transfer record in the French league on Tuesday by signing Uruguay striker Edinson Cavani to a five-year contract for a reported fee of 64 million euros ($84 million).
The previous record belonged to Monaco, which recently paid Atletico Madrid an estimated 60 million euros ($79 million) for Colombia striker Radamel Falcao.
It is the fifth most expensive transfer in history, behind Cristiano Ronaldo‘s move from Manchester United to Real Madrid, Zinedine Zidane‘s switch from Juventus to Real Madrid, Zlatan Ibrahimovic‘s move from Inter Milan to Barcelona and Kaka‘s transfer from AC Milan to Real Madrid.
Cavani, who will wear the No. 9 shirt, was the top scorer in the Italian league last season with 29 goals. He led Napoli to the Italian Cup title in 2012 and to a runner-up finish in Serie A this year.
By making its first signing, PSG restored a bit of order at the club following Italian coach Carlo Ancelotti‘s departure for Real Madrid and Brazilian sporting director Leonardo‘s resignation last week.
Cavani’s arrival takes some pressure off Ibrahimovic’s shoulders. Ibrahimovic was instrumental in PSG winning its first league title since 1994 last season. The Sweden striker led the French league with 30 goals in the 2012-13 season, while forwards Jeremy Menez, Kevin Gameiro and Ezequiel Lavezzi struggled to find the net.
Cavani’s signing also alleviates the uncertainty that surrounded PSG when Ancelotti and Leonardo decided to leave.
Leonardo has been suspended until June 30, 2014 for shoving a referee after a French league match against Valenciennes in May. PSG president Nasser El-Khelaifi confirmed that Tuesday was the Brazilian’s final day at the club.
Ancelotti joined Real Madrid last month. He has been replaced by former France coach Laurent Blanc, who led Bordeaux to the French league title in 2009 but does not have Ancelotti’s experience on the European stage.