Wednesday, February 28, 2024

“A young person watches 300 hours of FIFA and 10 of soccer”

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The interest of the fans has changed, soccer not only competes with cycling or basketball, it competes with Netflix, with Amazon, with Disney. You have to offer the best football.

The fan has a limited time and budget for their entertainment and the best matches are the locomotive of the entire football ecosystem, says Bernd Reichart, CEO of A 22 Sports Management.The Advocate General published his non-binding report yesterday in which he allowed the right of sanctions by UEFA, but also had positive points: “For the first time he recognizes that anyone can organize competitions. For the first time. Can’t say it louder. He is telling UEFA that they have to adapt to a transparent system . There has never been a clear procedure and the report is clear on that point. You have to be critical of the report because it is based on an article contrary to the free competition of the European Union”, assured Luis Alonso, managing partner of the Commercial area of ​​Clifford Chance. He added that it is not possible to predict what the verdict of the case will be.

Anyway. the Advocate General ‘s report is not binding and it will be in the spring when the European Court decides . “The Super League is not dead, it is very much alive,” says Reichart. “We want to develop proposals to solve serious football problems and we are in an honest dialogue with all football players. We are looking for economic stability for all the clubs in Europe”. And that football is more attractive in a society where getting the attention of consumers is the biggest challenge facing all offers. “People have a lot of offer. A 16-year-old boy watches 10 hours of football and 300 in FIFA 23 on the play.We want him to see more real football and we have to offer him what he asks for. That’s why they can have better matches. A match from the Champions League preview generates more than six times the audience than any of those inconsequential matches. We don’t want football to be seen in Tik Tok summaries. We want the Super League to be the best European competition. Some reports say that it is the Premier and we are working to create a better competition”, continues Reichart.For the Super League, the clubs fear sanctions from UEFA. “But less and less, we talk to them and they share the diagnosis we make and confirm that we cannot continue in the direction we are going: in governance or in financial fair play. The problem is that the punishment of the European body, which governs, allows access to the market and imposes sanctions is scary. “ The clubs have understood that this case can change the system of the sport in Europe.It is incredible that sport is outside the Competition Law. It can’t be that the teams have to take all the risks and they have to take nothing. It is incredible that there are clubs that participate in closed competitions or almost like the Euroleague and say that the Super League is exclusive, when it is not. Today it is a Europeanist project”, Reichart continues.

A report commissioned by LaLiga assured that the Super League would lower the income of the national competition. “Every time the president of LaLiga speaks, we know more about our project,” replied the CEO of A22 Sports Management. “He speaks and does the calculations with a format that we don’t have. They have invented a format to do that. He keeps talking about a closed project when it is not. Ours is an open competition and during the week. No one is harmed by the improvement in European competitions. The general lawyer says that it is perfectly legal to make a Super Leagueoutside the system. He invites the clubs to leave their own leagues and I don’t understand how the president of LaLiga celebrates it. It is perfectly compatible to want to improve European football and continue playing LaLiga”.

Reichart has denied that the Super League is elitist: “It is not an exclusive initiative for a few. Many clubs see their possibilities of growing in a European competition limited and we think of the entire European football ecosystem”. What he has not been able to announce is a format that is not yet available. “It would be cynical to talk to the clubs if we had a format. We have to know the legal framework on which to build the alternative”.

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