Il Sole 24 Ore explains why the top European club have decided the create the Super League and part ways with UEFA.
Il Sole 24 Ore journalist Marco Bellinazzo offers new details on how the creation of the Super League unfolded, underlining that this process was inevitable: “The great maneuvers began in October, in January there was the first important response arrived from UEFA and FIFA, who excommunicated the big names ready to make this split. In recent months there has been a lot of discussion on the format of the new Champions League, called upon to please the big clubs. This has not happened.
The Super Champions envisioned more matches among the big clubs, in order to increase revenues, which were deemed insufficient. Furthermore, UEFA has not conceded anything on governance while the clubs wanted to have an active part with the stakeholders and have looked for another path. On this path they found American baking giant JP Morgan that has put on the table 6.5 billion euros with 3.5 billion in immediate financing.
Each founding club will earn 250-300 million, in order to meet the financial needs and investments. These 12 clubs, in 2020 alone, have a total debt of more than 5 billion. They enter this new phase of football changes quite sick. The pandemic situation has accelerated everything pushing the clubs to create a similar tournament to the basketball EuroLeague model.
The same excommunication threats were repeated by UEFA and FIFA today. But these potential sanctions are directed at clubs that account for 3/4 of the turnover and 3/4 of the fans. The clubs play on the fact that if they were thrown out of the leagues, they would create mini tournaments with much lower value, rather than what the same leagues would have with Super League clubs. The leagues, if they had a different approach, would understand that by being able to count on clubs participating in the Super League, more clubs that compete in UEFA competitions, they could find more funds, create more revenues with more important players arriving in their respective championships.
The clubs believe that under UEFA they are participating in a world where the merit has been zeroed. The current system, between Financial Fair Play and Champions designed in a certain way, has meant that sporting merit and Cinderella stories are increasingly limited. The system must be modified so that this surplus of resources is better distributed although it is evident that this system clashes a little with the one we love most.
If there was more osmosis for joining this competition, it can cause an acceleration of a process that goes differently from the oligopoly that has been created up to now. A frequent comparison made in recent months was how much the NFL was worth compared to football. The NFL has 300 million fans and makes 8-9 billion in sales and TV rights, football has 3 billion fans and with the Champions League and the Europa League it has a turnover of 3 billion. UEFA has not been able to reduce the gap, hence the accusation of the clubs, namely that they have not been able to fully exploit the competitions. The European giants want to have the opportunity to improve, it is a financial necessity that the clubs have, because between now and 2024, when the Super Champions would start, some teams risk shutting down”.
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