European football clubs were given support from UEFA today to oppose FIFA’s push for biennial World Cups and were promised a “multi-billion debt fund” to stabilise the industry in the pandemic.
About 160 members of the European Club Association assemble to discuss all the issues since the beginning of the pandemic and the Super League project collapsed as it was supposed to. PSG Chairman and the new leader of the ECA, Nasser al-Khelaifi, who kept his club out of the Super League and helped in the collapse of the idea said to everyone that he won’t focus on the ‘not-so-Super League’ as that will put light on those who were fabulists and failures in bringing out this idea.
The former chairman of the ECA was Andrea Agnelli who resigned in April due to him and his club Juventus being one of the founding members of the Super League. Agnelli can be considered as one of the driving forces behind this idea alongside Real Madrid president Florentino Perez.
Al- Khelaifi spoke along with UEFA chairman Alexsander Ceferin and they began an intense week of talks in European football against the background of FIFA bringing out a proposal for a two-yearly World Cup for men and women. If it gets approved, it would mean there will be a marquee tournament every year. The detailed plans of the UEFA and the ECA would help European Football recover from billions in lost revenue due to disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Khelaifi has recognised this reality and said that they will have to act soon and hence is the ECA is working alongside UEFA to bring out a multibillion-euro debt fund that will allow clubs of all tiers to accelerate their recovery from the financial disruptions of COVID-19.
Clubs should be able to cover the debts by getting all loans from the UEFA secured against future commercial revenue from all the European competitions and can’t be used for the transfer market. Ceferin warned against irresponsibility in handling the funds and wanted to extend a “helping hand” to all the clubs who have lost revenue. He also wants all clubs to resist the idea of biennial World Cups presented by FIFA saying that more is always not better and it’s a great tournament because it’s rare. FIFA would get less revenue from this but they would get more to share with members which include the 55 in Europe while potentially taking available revenue away from club competitions.
Ceferin denounced the “disgraceful and charlatan Super League” and did not refer to the lawsuit filed by Real Madrid, FC Barcelona and Juventus in the Court of Luxembourg regarding UEFA’s control of organising competitions.
UEFA is organising a two-day conference to discuss these issues with various stakeholders such as clubs, players, fans, leagues etc. The meeting will discuss various aspects including the financial aspects of it which consist of the controversial Financial Fair Play and how they will replace it with another way to monitor the club’s spending.