Not a five-year, nor ten-year plan – the time is NOW for a Euro League exclaims the Chief of Galatasaray Football Club, know affectionately as “Cim Bom”.
Unal Aysal, President of the Turkish Giant hopes for a 20 strong League in 2018, to replace the current Champions League format. He goes on to say: “It’s the future of football. It has to be created, and not in 10 years, but as soon as possible. Football is a great industry, a growing industry. A European super league would bring a lot of support and energize football in general. I think it would be 20 big teams, with three to five teams changing every year. It can be fixed in a way to be useful to European football and bring new horizons by football. It can be controlled by UEFA or the clubs, preferably by the clubs.”
The European Club Association and UEFA naturally resisted any attempt to give the Turk’s lone voice any credence – giving the party line that a Euro League is already in place, “the Champions League”. Purely rhetoric, or a PR stunt, who knows? Aysal says that financial backers and sponsors are queuing up but anybody can say that. Show me the money or commitment from the other clubs to this proposition.
Who makes the cut off will be interesting. Naturally, Cim Bom expects to be there. Celtic is one such club that would be anxious to continue to gain a share of the European purse having banked circa £22M last year. Real Madrid, Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain are allegedly plotting.
The proposed timeline synchronises with the expiry of the memorandum of understanding between UEFA and the European Clubs Association, a framework for European club and international football, which runs to the end of May 2018.