The ephemeral Super League project, launched last month by twelve major European clubs, "did not have at heart to defend the interests of football", declared the president of Paris Saint-Germain Nasser Al-Khelaïfi, for whom the Champions League must be "preserved".
“Football has been around for years and years.
The Super League did not have at heart to defend the interests of football, “said the leader in statements to AFP.
"You can envision changes but not break the tradition which means that each club can hope to achieve its dreams", insisted the Parisian president, remained loyal in this crisis to the European Football Union (UEFA) and to its Champions League , flagship football competition in Europe since 1955.
As a reward, Nasser Al-Khelaïfi was appointed head of the European Association of Clubs (ECA), in place of the discredited Andrea Agnelli (Juventus), one of the leaders of the mutiny.
For the Qatari leader, the fact that the Super League project planned to bring together 15 “founding” clubs each season, automatically qualified, and only five teams selected on sporting criteria was a red line in total opposition to the meritocratic tradition of football European.
"All the teams must have the possibility of participating one day in the biggest competitions, and while remaining under the wing of UEFA", argued Nasser Al-Khelaïfi, while ensuring to be open to changes in the format of the queen competition.
"Adapt to the market"
"The Champions League is a very strong brand that must be preserved, but we must always be able to adapt to the market, and this is true for all competitions, domestic or international," he concluded.
UEFA has undertaken in recent months a profound reform of the Champions League by 2024, providing for its passage from 32 to 36 clubs, with a hundred additional matches supposed to tempt broadcasters, and a "mini-championship" inspired by tournaments. chess to replace the current group stage.
This format, considered difficult to read, has nevertheless given rise to some criticism, in particular about an already overloaded schedule.
At the same time, UEFA has opened disciplinary proceedings against Real Madrid, FC Barcelona and Juventus Turin, the last mutinous clubs not to have reneged on the project, which for their part ensure that they remain "committed to modernizing football".
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