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Squawk7777
3rd Nov 2018, 17:13
Link (https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/46078651)

Top European clubs have held secret talks to create a European Super League, according to a report by German publication Der Spiegel. (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/football-documents-show-secret-plans-for-elite-league-of-top-clubs-a-1236447.html)

The newspaper claims leaked documents show the breakaway league could be created in 2021 and see clubs involved leave their national leagues and football associations.

Der Spiegel also alleges separate documents show Manchester City and Paris St-Germain avoided financial fair play sanctions with the intervention of Fifa president Gianni Infantino.

Premier League champions City said they would not comment "on out of context materials purportedly hacked or stolen".

Der Spiegel says its source is a whistleblower they call John, who claims that neither he nor his associates are hackers.

"We have very good sources and a strong network that provides us with a lot of information," he told Der Spiegel.What about the European Super League?Der Spiegel claims Real Madrid has joined forces with AC Milan, Arsenal, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Juventus and Manchester United to form a group of seven sides who went behind the back of Uefa, European football's governing body, to discuss forming a European Super League.


As part of their plans, the clubs allegedly discussed "an option for leaving the national leagues and their football associations behind entirely".

Bayern Munich are supposed to have explored the legal complexities of the breakaway and one of the documents Der Spiegel says it has seen is a "binding term sheet" which 16 clubs would sign to form the Super League.

The new competition, it is claimed, would involve 11 of Europe's biggest clubs, known as the "founders", along with five "initial guests".

The so-called founders, who would include the seven clubs named above along with Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City and Paris St-Germain, would not face relegation and would be guaranteed membership for 20 years.

Der Spiegel reports that the five "initial guests," according to the document, would be Atletico Madrid, Borussia Dortmund, Inter Milan, Marseille and Roma.

A Bayern Munich statement said they were "unaware of recent plans for a so-called Super League" and had not "taken part in negotiations relating to such plans".

The club's chairman added: "FC Bayern Munich stands by its membership of the Bundesliga and, as long as I am chairman of the board of FC Bayern, also by the club competitions organised jointly by Uefa and the ECA (European Club Association)."

United declined to comment, while Arsenal, AC Milan, Juventus and Real Madrid have been contacted for their response by BBC Sport.What are the FFP claims involving Infantino?Manchester City are owned by Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan's Abu Dhabi United Group, while PSG are owned by Qatar Sports Investment.

According to Der Spiegel's report, (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/financial-fair-play-manchester-city-and-psg-pact-with-the-sheikhs-a-1236414.html) they overvalued sponsorship deals to help meet FFP rules and, when facing sanctions over the matter, the allegations in the documents state Infantino helped arrange more lenient punishments for them in 2014.

At the time, Fifa president Infantino was in his previous role as Uefa general secretary and City and PSG were both fined (https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/27445475) £49m, £32m of which was suspended.

Following the latest claims, City's statement added: "The attempt to damage the club's reputation is organized and clear."

A PSG statement said it "has always acted in full compliance with the laws and regulations enacted by sports institutions" and it "denies the allegations".

The club added: "Since the introduction of Financial Fair Play, Paris St-Germain have been one of the most audited and scrutinised clubs in history."

Uefa's response detailed the aims of FFP and added that the system "is a comparatively recent system of regulation" and with "the early cases" took "Uefa and the clubs into unchartered territory".

It said: "Uefa is confident that any apparent inconsistencies that may seem evident to some, have been eliminated as the system has developed and become more familiar to all sides."

Infantino became president of Fifa, world football's governing body, in 2016.

"All decisions on Uefa Financial Fair Play cases are made by the Uefa Club Financial Control Body (CFCB)," said a Fifa statement. "It is an independent body.

"The Uefa administration, which of course includes the general secretary, can assist the CFCB depending on the specific case.

"This may include discussions, meetings, assistance to help find solutions, and other interactions to assist the CFCB in its work. Nonetheless, the CFCB is entirely responsible for their own decisions."

In an interview last week, Infantino spoke in general terms when he said: "My job entails having discussions, having conversations, exchanging documents, drafts, ideas, whatever, on many, many, many, many, topics.

"Otherwise you don't go anywhere. I mean, if I just have to stay in my room and not speak to anyone and cannot do anything, how can I do my job properly?

"So if then this is being portrayed as something bad, I think there's not much I can do more than my job in an honest way, in a professional way and trying to defend the interests of football."Where did the leaked documents come from?Der Spiegel says the source of the documents they have obtained is a whistleblower called John, which is not his real name, who founded Football Leaks.

Up to 70 million documents have been provided by Football Leaks and more than 3.4 terabytes of information.

Der Spiegel has shared the information with other media outlets in the European Investigative Collaborations (EIC) consortium, which includes Reuters news agency, the Sunday Times and Spain's El Mundo.

Together, about 80 journalists from 15 media outlets looked at the information provided.

racedo
3rd Nov 2018, 18:07
Think it is pie in the sky idea.

Club draw local support and will continue to do so.

Hussar 54
3rd Nov 2018, 19:02
https://cimg2.ibsrv.net/gimg/pprune.org-vbulletin/500x524/things_that_didnt_exist_in_2006_iphone_spotify_instagraim_o_ 29394824_732ea6300832a8f7c23e008972d02bd2f2cdff59.png

Saintsman
3rd Nov 2018, 21:30
let them go, I won’t be watching them. I don’t want to see the same few sides playing week in.

However, there is an up side to this. If the TV money follows them and it gets taken from the Premier League, the clubs will no longer afford to pay the stupid money they do now and perhaps prices to watch will fall to something more reasonable. It wall also result in players wages becoming a little more realistic, though I suppose Bentley sales may take a hit...

Nervous SLF
4th Nov 2018, 02:43
Think it is pie in the sky idea.

Club draw local support and will continue to do so.

True but there was an article a short time ago that showed that teams would still make a large
profit without spectators through the gate. The TV money is a massive percentage of a clubs income
in the P.L.
I agree with Saintsman as well about players wages.... I refuse to call them earnings as IMHO they don't
really "earn" such ridiculous amounts they just get paid them.

ORAC
4th Nov 2018, 09:51
TV and media rights dwarf income at the turnstiles - and will only escalate dramatically if the matches being televised are against Barecelona and Madrid rather than Newcastle or Crystal Palace. And do you think the ticket demand for be less for watching Barcelona than Watford?

https://www.theguardian.com/football/2018/jun/06/premier-league-finances-club-guide-2016-17

ORAC
5th Nov 2018, 12:09
Matthew Syed in The Times

Football must grow a backbone or Super League will be here in a Decade

The first rule of Fight Club is you do not talk about Fight Club. The first rule of the European Super League is you do not talk about the European Super League (ESL). At least not in public. You just mention it, sotto voce, to Fifa, to Uefa, to the domestic leagues and, yes, to the smaller clubs any time that they try to stand in your way. That, of course, is the big takeaway from the latest leaks published in Der Spiegel. The point is not that an ESL is imminent. It is not that clubs are making the final legal checks for a realignment of world football. No, the chastening takeaway is that most of the big changes have already happened.

That is the true meaning of the ESL. Its significance is not based upon its concrete realisation, but its ghoulish presence, hovering around the edges of the game, channelling conversations, the implicit threat that has driven the drumbeat of European football since it was first seriously mooted by Media Partners in 1998. It is the game’s defining spectre. The ESL was the threat that led to the expansion of the Champions League from 16 to 32 clubs, the threat that created its first financial-distribution model, favouring lavish payments to top clubs over solidarity payments to the rest of the game; the threat that enabled the footballing elite to nobble the initial proposals for financial fair play, the supposedly grand plan of the governing body.

You will remember that it was supposed to be about debt, particularly the leveraged variety as per the Glazer model at Manchester United, but the big clubs did not want to be policed in that way. So they essentially strong-armed Uefa into changing the criterion to one based on revenues, which effectively locked in advantages for the clubs that had already established large income streams and pulled up the drawbridge on the rest. It is the implicit threat that enabled the top Premier League clubs to insist that the distribution model that had served the collective since the very beginning in 1992 was abolished. Foreign rights income, previously equally split between all 20 clubs as a way of preserving competitive balance, will from 2019-20 be disproportionately paid to the top six — most of which already enjoy huge injections of cash from the Champions League.

Hardened negotiators say that you have to be able to walk away. Brexit campaigners say that no deal is better than a bad deal. The question has always been whether this threat is credible. What is clear is that the ESL is not just a putative fall-back position for the big clubs if they don’t get what they want, but a possibility that now has legal documents, Powerpoint presentations and Excel spreadsheets to back it up.

And that is what is at stake here. It is not coincidental that top European clubs met Charlie Stillitano weeks before the crunch meeting with Uefa in 2016. Stillitano, the American entrepreneur with the horn-rimmed glasses who is drumming up support for the ESL, seems like the bad guy, but the truth is that he is being played like a fiddle. The big clubs must have known that the meetings would be mentioned in elite circles and create yet more fear of a fracturing of the jurisdictional structure on which the game has depended for decades. Little wonder that, after their initial shock, Uefa reformed the Champions League yet again in time for this season, this time increasing win bonuses and inserting what have been euphemistically called “heritage payments” based on performances over the past ten years of the competition, thus effectively siphoning more cash off to the big clubs, constituting 30 per cent of the budget. Meanwhile, solidarity payments were squeezed yet again, this time to 6.5 per cent of the overall settlement.

Those who say that the ESL won’t happen, that it is empty talk, that it will never crystalise, are watching the wrong soap opera. The ESL has already worked in precisely the way that the top clubs have always wanted and planned. It is not in the least bit coincidental that the de facto powerbrokers may have a clandestine meeting, or a video conference, or some other means of spooking the other parties to any negotiation weeks before any summit. Indeed, I suspect that the big clubs are not in the least bit bothered about the leaks; some suspect they may even have been behind them. The more that people fear this spectre, the more that it is debated, the greater their power. The work performed by the international law firm Cleary Gottlieb to examine its legal possibility will be more than recouped with yet more changes to the ecosystem of football, in favour of the equity holders of the elite.

And this is the truth that dare not speak its name. We are moving towards the reality of an ESL not through any decisive break with the status quo, but through stealth and increment. It is the death of football as we know it through a thousand cuts. Andrea Agnelli, the chairman of Juventus, has already suggested the possibility of increasing the number of Champions League fixtures from 2024, together with curtailed domestic leagues. Cut, cut, cut.

As for Bayern Munich’s chief executive, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, he is actively lobbying the EU for an exception that would allow Uefa to operate a salary cap, the single biggest draw of a ESL. “Today there are signals from Brussels for a reassessment of the situation,” he has said. If a salary cap became reality, it would entail a massive redistribution of wealth from players to the owners of the biggest clubs. Cut, cut, cut.

If we are not careful, we will have an ESL in all but name within a decade. And the extraordinary thing is that it will all have happened without the big clubs taking a single risk. The global game will have been comprehensively transformed into the creature of the elite, with rules, distribution models, codes, qualification criteria and rights apportionment authored by a tiny clique, unelected, unaccountable, and whose actions are utterly beyond the scrutiny of fans.

And this is why football needs to grow a backbone. It is a shame that governing bodies lack moral authority, but still. After more than two decades of appeasement, football has to stand up. To call the bluff of the elite, to invite them to follow through on the threat that they have been leveraging for so long.

If you want to walk away, then go. See if you can stomach the anger of fans, the possibility that a new league — bereft of history or tradition and with no relegation for founding teams — will alienate audiences. See if you can stomach the risk that by imperilling the domestic leagues that nurtured your very growth, you will endanger the global game. Yet be warned: if the house of cards comes tumbling down, your precious equity may be lost in the process, billions incinerated in the time that it takes for reality to bite.

I don’t think the owners will have the balls. Either way, it is high time to find out.

racedo
6th Nov 2018, 00:08
True but there was an article a short time ago that showed that teams would still make a large
profit without spectators through the gate. The TV money is a massive percentage of a clubs income
in the P.L.
I agree with Saintsman as well about players wages.... I refuse to call them earnings as IMHO they don't
really "earn" such ridiculous amounts they just get paid them.

Yes and No........

Clubs sign mega sponsirshop deals for kit sales.................... they make little selling through staff shops or elsewhere as they get the money up front.
If people stopped buying replica kit the mega deals would stop, likewise if people stopped paying Sky etc.

racedo
6th Nov 2018, 00:11
TV and media rights dwarf income at the turnstiles - and will only escalate dramatically if the matches being televised are against Barecelona and Madrid rather than Newcastle or Crystal Palace. And do you think the ticket demand for be less for watching Barcelona than Watford?

https://www.theguardian.com/football/2018/jun/06/premier-league-finances-club-guide-2016-17

When televised footie came in would see many 20 games a year on TV.................. 25 years later with 10 times number of games I probably see 15 games a year and where as before I would look at non Man Utd games if they on, now I don't.
Diminishing law of returns where viewership declines.
One only has to look at NFL..................... empty seats by the thousand.