Although the Super League has been debated for at least 20 years, its establishment has brought us a huge impact in all aspects. I doubt it very much, and don’t believe it will happen again for at least ten years. The biggest and wealthiest clubs so far used the idea of the Super League in their negotiations with Uefa, and this idea will always satisfy them: the number of participants in UEFA club matches entering from the main leagues has increased, the preliminary rounds have been cancelled, the first four rounds Major league clubs directly introduced the Champions League… The UEFA Executive Committee today confirmed the last reform of the Champions League, which is also in line with what the clubs now leading illegal teams seek. Therefore, I did not expect to separate the big clubs from Ufa so soon.
So far, the symbiosis crisis is a key change that has affected their relationship. The club’s financial reports are poor and revenues have been declining year by year, which has accelerated the process. Ten years later, UEFA also closed the Champions League, but this epidemic and its consequences accelerated many social processes, thereby changing football. The drop of water splashed on the glass. Although Uefa’s development direction is very similar to that of its separated club, the Champions League is still a soft version of the Super League. They will vary according to the number of clubs participating in the tournament. Of the 36 Champions League participants, 12 are through domestic leagues, so small clubs like Atlanta-I think they are small in Europe, not in Croatia-can take advantage of Juventus not ranking in the top four in China Situation ranking. The difference is that the Super League guarantees a certain budget for each club at the beginning of the game. In times of crisis, each guaranteed one million or ten million euros is of great significance to entities whose sales have fallen sharply. One can say that the stadium will be full again by then.
Although we have been vaccinated, we don’t know how long this situation will last, and when we will return to the situation in 2019, when we have sold out the stadium. The Super League, or its main sponsor, the large American bank JP Morgan Chase, gave each club 350 million euros just for competition, and it was a “game changer” that changed the views of club leaders. For their financial situation, it does not matter whether they are ranked fourth or sixth at the end of the game, because now they have a guaranteed income from the beginning. That is crucial. If we were not hit by the pandemic, this separation would not have happened, but this is still an unprecedented shock in European football. We know that the United States has closed the league, and in Europe, tradition is a huge emotional driving force.
Football consumers are often shocked by the dizzying numbers surrounding football, but if we know how angry it can be to watch, watch, comment and pay for subscriptions, we underestimate its importance on a global scale. These are unimaginable numbers. Manchester United has more fans in Indonesia than in England. In this case, the role of JPMorgan Chase is not the end of the story-the league still has a lot of room for growth.
My impression is that UEFA is unwilling to involve clubs in negotiating decisions, but the European Football Umbrella reserves the right to negotiate key issues such as television rights. The club requires the right to vote, which is likely to fall apart. UEFA President Aleksandar Ceferin said today that Juventus’s first man, until yesterday, the President of the Club Association (ECA) had deceived him seriously, and he lied to him during negotiations. From this position it is difficult to say who should be blamed for their failure to reach an agreement, and Uefa may have used the wrong method. However, the reaction of fans and customers cannot be underestimated. Their acceptance of the Super League should not be underestimated. As for the Champions League, it will still exist, but there is no biggest club and a smaller budget. We have seen a similar situation in European basketball, so we can still play through various games.
The European sports system is specific, and the possibility of promotion and expulsion from traditional leagues has a history of more than 100 years. It cannot be broken overnight. But when it comes to business models, closed alliances are the most meaningful. Rijeka Chairman Mimir Mišković recently talked about this and explained that clubs are difficult to operate because they cannot predict the income of sponsors, the income of UEFA awards, etc. In the Super League, money is guaranteed, and you know exactly how much money exists, so doing business is easier. The Americans are not stupid. Their model is the most feasible business and the best solution. The money is more or less evenly distributed to the NBA and NFL clubs, and there is no sign of relegation. The Super League will operate similarly. In Europe, we are not accustomed to such a system, no matter whether the American model makes sense, the traditions and desires of European fans will not change like this.
Some fans feel disgusted that due to recent changes, they will stop watching football or certain games, but from a global perspective, this proportion is negligible. Most people want to watch the best football and the best players. Football will always attract people’s attention, and the fact that some romantics will calm down because of this will not affect the game in the context of the global market. Clubs are today’s world brand. Fans often change the clubs they follow and change their interests. In this regard, football has long been separated from the local base and identity, which has led to a situation where there are a sufficient number of consumers even for clubs without a local base.
I must point out the example of Germany and their clubs rejecting the Super League and staying true to their concept, in which fans play an important role in the club and have a share in the club. Each part. German football still has a specific social background, but it will face huge financial pressures in the future. They will no longer be able to compete with Super League clubs in terms of large transfers or salaries of players and coaches. This is similar to the situation when the European Union was founded. Because of the larger market, countries began to join, the British opposed it, and they joined anyway. These are not meaningless decisions, but are completely economically clear-if the results are to be maintained, the laws of the market must be followed.
Just by participating in the Super League, the club receives three times more prize money than winning the Champions League. The winner of the UEFA Champions League will receive 120 million euros, but there is only one winner. Gone are the days when football is free, so in Croatia, if we don’t pay, we can’t watch HNL for a long time. However, emotion is a strange phenomenon and a logical thing at the same time. People’s reactions to today’s feelings should not be reduced. No matter how long we cook the frog, the change comes too fast. Now, we raised the temperature from 50 degrees to 150 degrees overnight, and then the frog jumped out. It needs to be cooked for another ten years. By 2035, Uefa will definitely reach closed competition.
In Croatia, the champions-Dynamo, Osijek or others will most feel the impact of the change. For example, Dynamo in the UEFA Champions League will no longer be able to earn 25-30 million euros, and so far, the effect of the European Cup and the World League will not be so obvious. Our club still relies mainly on transfers to survive.
For clubs like Naples, Sevilla or Valencia, this is first of all a huge shock. If the out-of-control club does not participate in the domestic league, it will bring them huge losses. I doubt Uefa’s announcement to expel them from the national league, because without them, the Federation would find it difficult to complete financial construction. Regardless of whether there are Barcelona or Real, television rights cannot be applied equally. I think the league will give way to the clubs because when they draw the line, it will be difficult to survive without them. Therefore, Uefa may be alone in this battle. For clubs like Sevilla and Valencia, the income of the Champions League is more important than their income from television rights to national championships.
I think it will be difficult to maintain the ban on out-of-control club players playing for their national team. When Luka Modric did not make any decision, how could it be possible to ban Luka Modric from playing in the national team. Onions are neither eaten nor have the smell of onions. I don’t understand how this decision punishes the Chinese Super League, which has been an obstacle for them for a long time. Well, they only wipe their hands.
The important point is that the Premier League allows clubs to broadcast highlights on its digital platform during the game, while Uefa publishes a summary on its website the next day. UEFA has already caused damage to itself. If they allow the club to participate in making strategic decisions, then such a split may not happen. The experts in the club are bigger than Uefa, they make money, but Uefa money itself is lost. The UEFA Champions League is a cow, and the club must operate in the market.
For the Great Split, it is impossible to just point your finger at the culprit. Sponsors play an important role, but this is not the only important factor. This is an interesting question. When sharing the financial cake, everyone’s goal is to expand the financial cake as much as possible. This is true in all areas of business, economy and industry. Who can guarantee that our Super League is not just a temporary solution? Until the club reach an agreement with Uefa, that is, until they know how much money they will receive in the new format of the Champions League from 2024, they will not be able to play for two or three years. Perhaps because they are heavily in debt, they have to wait another three years too long. Regardless of the long-term contract between the club and the Super League, no one would say that this change is permanent. Maybe the Super League will cease to exist in two years, maybe its leader will eventually shake hands with people from Uefa, maybe Uefa will have a new president who has a different view from Ceferin.
*Tomislav Globan is an assistant professor in the Department of Macroeconomics and Economic Development at the Zagreb School of Economics, where he teaches sports economics courses in English. Globan has published many papers and articles on the football market and is committed to analyzing current economic trends.