As the money brought in by the English Premier League continues to rise, the rest of Europe’s big clubs are terrified of the prospect of being left behind. This is the key reason that the long rumored Super League appears to be coming closer and closer to reality, even as many high ranking people in the game deny it.
The English Premier League is flush with cash now. Last season, the club that finished in 20th place and was relegated earned more money than Real Madrid did for winning the UEFA Champions League. If you’re not an English club, this can’t be a long term plan. You have to figure something else out.
The solution, for now, was announced by UEFA following extensive meetings with the European Club Association (ECA). The changes announced to the Champions League are as follows:
- UEFA Europa League winner will automatically make the following season’s Champions League group stage
- Top four clubs from top four leagues automatically qualify for the Champions League group stage
- Clubs will be judged on their own coefficient (country share won’t be considered any longer)
- Historical success will be considered in the new coefficient (more weighted for UCL and UEL wins)
- MORE MONEY
- Sporting performances will be rewarded better and market pool rewards will decrease
Now, UEFA is also considering splitting the matches on each Matchday into separate times, so they can air more live matches and charge broadcasters more money.
All of this remains a desperate attempt by UEFA to hold their Champions League together and keep Europe’s big clubs from breaking away and forming the Super League.
Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, Bayern Munich CEO and head of the ECA, has previously spoken about the likelihood of the Super League.
"I would not rule out that in the future a European league is founded in which the big teams from Italy, Germany, England, Spain, and France play. . . The league might be organized under UEFA or potentially privately." The purpose of such a league would be "to adapt the soccer system to the new challenges of globalization." He further explained, "That is an idea that came up some time ago. I observed that the top clubs in the five strongest European leagues are constantly growing stronger."
The Super League will be here one day to replace the Champions League. The biggest issue, for now, remains how much richer the Premier League will become over their European rivals. We know that Bayern, Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid and Barcelona can keep up, but can anyone else?