Proposed plans for a breakaway European Colossal League are “fiction” – in step with the 2 most extremely efficient officials in European football.
Uefa president Aleksander Ceferin and Andrea Agnelli, the chairman of the influential European Membership Association (ECA) which represents over 200 leading teams, articulate they are “united” – despite no longer too prolonged ago leaked paperwork claiming secret talks had been held over the creation of a brand unique elite league.
“The Colossal League is no longer going to happen. It is miles in a capacity a fiction now or a dream,” said Ceferin.
Agnelli, who’s also chairman of Juventus – one of the teams reported to be a capacity founding member of the Colossal League – added: “I’m able to substantiate we beget by no methodology viewed, by no methodology discussed, by no methodology been all for the creation of this document.
“We are fully engaged with Uefa in shaping the sport going ahead.”
Talking exclusively to BBC Sport, Ceferin and Agnelli also outlined:
- Their plans to reform European football from 2024 onwards.
- How a revised football calendar would possibly per chance well explore less home football and more European ties performed.
- Why qualification for Europe must no longer lawful be for the elite.
Will there be a breakaway?
German newsletter Der Speigel claims to beget paperwork which existing a brand unique Colossal League would be up and working by 2021 – that contains the ideal clubs from Spain, Italy, Germany, England and France.
Nonetheless, Ceferin and Agnelli are adamant that the head clubs will preserve within Uefa and that detailed talks are beneath technique to search out “solutions” – including changes to the layout of the Champions League to valid a more profitable broadcasting deal.
“We beget now some solutions. All I’m able to claim is that any Colossal League is out of the set a question to. Participation stays. And all americans can beget a probability to compete in each and each European competition,” said Ceferin.
So what does it indicate for European competitions?
A brand unique zero.33 European competition with 32 teams would possibly per chance be rubber-stamped at a Uefa meeting in Dublin early subsequent month.
So with the Champions League, Europa League and the unique zero.33 contest, a total of ninety six teams will compete as soon as pre-qualifying is accomplished.
Cerefin says this would possibly per chance well be the “starting up build of wider European competition”, and that clubs and nationwide associations “care for it”.
Referencing the likes of Celtic, Porto, Benfica, Ajax and Anderlecht, Agnelli added: “This would possibly per chance well be our responsibility to safeguard one of the best heritages of European football but on the diversified aspect I mediate we are totally mindful that we must safeguard markets, we must take into fable upcoming markets.
“We beget now to take into fable Poland. We beget now to take into fable [countries like] Turkey, we must take into fable Russia. Fans can leisure assured that if we set our hands to making a brand unique product it’s a ways because we desire to be obvious followers one day of Europe preserve.”
Will the prosperous lawful gather richer?
Every men reject the suggestion that the dominance of Europe’s high teams is being reinforced by these unique competition constructions.
“The dogma of the dream has to preserve alive, because it’s the foundation of European sports,” says Agnelli.
Ceferin says: “Unfortunately on this planet many times it occurs that the prosperous turn out to be richer. I mediate we are one of the rare organisations on this planet that tackles this topic.
“We know that we must gradual the gap [between rich clubs and the rest] because potentially this would possibly per chance well be laborious to pause fully.
“And I’m no longer particular if we desire to beget every person equal with out intervention. I mediate that wouldn’t be the ravishing capacity because if you happen to would possibly per chance well be doing a factual job, that that you just would possibly per chance well even be working a lot, attempting to carry out something, it’s a ways a must-must be rewarded for that.
“But ‘know your region’ is no longer ravishing to claim. You should compete, it’s a ways a must-must beget results to qualify for the head competition. Do that it’s good to must no longer beget results it will most likely be a unusual competition. You capture it by sport results, it’s the a plot.”
Why carry out they mediate swap is wished?
Nothing will essentially swap before 2024 when the existing competition arrangements expire.
Agnelli says the aim is for every and each membership to magnify their global publicity thru more European ties – while Cerefin says they are “seeking an answer together”.
“The one platforms can only come thru global competitions and for that reason growing participation growing inclusion it’s a ways key to all of us,” he added.
“Now essentially the most linked video games are the head of the ladder video games. Do that it’s good to see at the Champions League final when put next to the Colossal Bowl it beats it by a aspect of 1.5 to 1.
“So the spectators of that sport are on a worldwide scale. We beget now to accomplish on that to assemble particular we beget the sources to allocate at some stage in Europe to permit each and each single membership, in each and each single European nation, to beget a lawful global platform.”
Does that indicate less home football then?
Every men declined to give particular part on the capacity changes to European football, given the ongoing negotiations with clubs, leagues and associations.
But if European fixtures magnify then an already packed football calendar will need comprehensive revision.
The ECA wishes to see the worldwide confederation tournaments, corresponding to the European Championships and Afcon, all performed within the summer season of the identical year. Guaranteed leisure classes for gamers is also high on the agenda.
And Agnelli’s understanding for a “rebalancing” of European video games over home video games is at risk of cause some controversy – despite the fact that each and each officials were challenging to point out that they are merely at an “understanding stage”.
“Evidently if you happen to would possibly per chance well be seeking to must beget an total rebalancing of European football and more global [European] football, all that would must lunge hand in hand with a slice price of home video games,” says Agnelli.
“But most importantly it’s a ways harmonising. This day you retract England, as an instance, that has two nationwide cups. A group doubtlessly plays fifty three home video games.
“Then you definately retract Germany the build essentially the most quantity of video games is Forty three because there are two fewer teams within the league and there would possibly per chance be merely one cup. So that is 10 video games incompatibility. Is it logical?
“There is a complete machine of anomalies that must be addressed. It would possibly per chance indicate in obvious leagues growing the volume of video games. It is miles no longer lawful about lowering, it’s about making it a diploma playing field, which is terribly distinguished.”
Ceferin and Agnelli will commute to Brussels on Tuesday to meet the European Commissioner for Sport, Tibor Navracsics.
Cerefin said: “We desire to existing that our imaginative and prescient of the style ahead for football is, as an instance, the same. It is miles no longer fully the identical. We [Uefa and the ECA] beget some disagreements now and again but we firmly affirm within the European sports model together.
“We mediate that the European football can lunge additional equipped that we preserve together, unified. Should always that that you just would possibly per chance well even be seeking to must make football it’s a ways a must-must preserve together.
“Europe has problems with unity for the time being – and football, as one of the ideal powers, must lead this unity. That is our notion.”