Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has given a scathing assessment of the current scenario in European football, adding that clubs with unlimited resources will have an unfair advantage over the other big boys when it came to signing the best players.
Perez has been agitated since plans to start the breakaway European Super League were scrapped by the clubs after a number of protests by fans.
The plan was for the 15 founding clubs to play in a league-plus-knockout format where their place was guaranteed each season, with five other places rolling. Ths would have ensured a much greater share of the revenue for these clubs compared to the Champions League where teams are often paid based on their performances, apart from qualifying for the tournament.
With the tournament scrapped, though, it’s likely that some of the usual names will dominate the transfer market.
Florentino Perez says clubs will find it hard to keep their best players
Florentino Perez explained that most clubs have three sources of income that allow them to compete with each other and sign the players they need.
However, with the some of them – the petro clubs like PSG and Manchester City – having unlimited resources to spend, they could leave the rest of the clubs behind when it comes to signing the best players.
“To start with, without revenue there is nothing. Next up, it’s necessary to have a stable competition, with strict Financial Fair Play, which works, and allows competition on a level playing field, not like now with competition against state financed clubs. Real Madrid, for example, has just three sources of income: ticket sales, television and sponsors,” Florentino Perez said in an interview with Dario AS.
“The problem won’t be being able to sign, it will be holding onto squads. Let’s see if nobody is forced to sell their best players! The footballers could end up in those teams with unlimited resources, over and above the three sources of income I mentioned earlier.”
It remains to be seen if UEFA will apply stricter Financial Fair Play restrictions in the future to ensure clubs with more resources don’t take advantage, and level the playing field.
The newly proposed format by UEFA for the Champions League will not begin until 2024.