The reasons why

  • European club competitions are not attractive enough throughout the year and are not achieving their full potential.  Fans are losing interest, particularly younger fans and the data shows it: 40% of 16–24-year-olds do not like or have an interest in football. European Club Association, 2020
  • Proposed reforms to existing competitions in 2024 will worsen the situation:
    The number of matches will increase significantly from 125 to 189, with the entire increase in match play taking place in an extended group stage prior to the final 16.  Further, in this new group stage, there will no longer be home and away matches. UEFA, 2022
  • Fan access to football, either live or remotely, is becoming prohibitively expensive. In many countries the cost of TV subscriptions are rising at an unacceptable rate. To reverse this trend the objective should be to generate more fan interest, thereby helping to moderate subscription prices.

Juventus has been and will always be an active player in proposing solutions to the problems of our industry, as it cares about its long-term sustainability. The overall goal is to put fans and footballers, the souls of the most beautiful sport in the world, back at the centre of this industry, whose throbbing heart is in the European Union. (…) Reforms, in any context, can only be achieved through listening and constructive dialogue with all stakeholders. Juventus wants to be an active part of that dialogue.”

Andrea Agnelli,
Chairman Juventus FC, letter to shareholders, 6 October 2022

Please forget about the Super League format and whether it is a rich, elitist, open or closed competition. If Barça is there, it will be because it is an open competition, with the best criteria of professionalism at all levels, based on meritocracy and with total respect for the state leagues. I assure you that you will have news soon, because the appropriate channels of dialogue will be established, working with the entire football family, without pressure and for the benefit of all. Bearing in mind the principle of solidarity, meritocracy, and I insist, offering solutions for all clubs.”

Joan Laporta,
President FC Barcelona, AGM, 9 October 2022

On our part, once the European Court of Justice has ruled on UEFA’s monopoly position over European football, we will all work together to excite fans throughout the year, to restore the passion for our sport and to reverse the current trend in European football. Only in this way can we protect the future of football as a whole, as a global sport and for the benefit of all. It must be, as we have always proposed, the result of a free debate among the entire football family.”

Florentino Pérez,
President Real Madrid, AGM, 2 October 2022

  • The current financial model of football is unsustainable. Controls on spending are insufficient and inadequately enforced.
  • Clubs are not allowed to manage themselves at European level as they do in domestic competitions. UEFA has been the sole body governing European club competitions for nearly 70 years. Clubs have no voting rights in UEFA which has 55 members and are only indirectly represented by associations which have 2 of 20 seats on the UEFA Executive Committee. UEFA Statutes, 2021
  • Solidarity payments are inadequate and not transparent. Current solidarity payments coming from European club competitions are inadequate and determined solely by UEFA, with little transparency as to the real grassroots impact.
  • Investment in women’s football, fan experience and physical infrastructure is inadequate. Stadiums and training facilities for both the men’s and women’s game across Europe are not up to world class standards. In addition, fans do not have sufficient, affordable access to top-class matches either in person or at home.
  • UEFA statutes effectively forbid clubs from working together to improve the system: A22’s argument before the European Court of Justice claims that articles 49 and 51 of the UEFA Statutes are in conflict with European Law. These articles state, respectively that UEFA “shall have the sole jurisdiction to organize or abolish international competitions in Europe in which Member Associations and/or their clubs participate” and “No combinations or alliances between UEFA Member Associations or between leagues or clubs affiliated, directly or indirectly, to different UEFA Member Associations may be formed without the permission of UEFA.” We firmly believe these statutes do not comply with European competition law and unfairly prevent clubs from cooperating to find new solutions to the problems facing the sport.

Bernd Reichart

“European Club Football is facing existential problems.”