Agnelli: ‘UEFA and FIFA face no economic risks’

by | Apr 21, 2021 08:59

Andrea Agnelli claimed FIFA and UEFA are not facing any economic risks and suggested he is firmly at the helm of Juventus.

The interviews with Il Corriere dello Sport and Repubblica were given before the news that all six English clubs – Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester United, Liverpool and Tottenham – had pulled out of the Super League.

Andrea Agnelli claimed FIFA and UEFA are not facing any economic risks and suggested he is firmly at the helm of Juventus.

The interviews with Il Corriere dello Sport and Repubblica were given before the news that all six English clubs – Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester United, Liverpool and Tottenham – had pulled out of the Super League.

"We didn't threaten anyone, we still want to participate in the domestic competitions. The tradition of football lies in the domestic championships. Fans are important to us and must have the chance to come to the stadium every Sunday," Agnelli said.

"The bonus of €350m per year is fake. We are still involved in domestic competitions, and we will play in every stadium in Italy, Spain and England. Every week, we'll give the fans the league's games and the games of a new competition that will bring closer the younger generations who are moving away from football.

"The younger ones want to watch significant events. They are not as attached to domestic competition as the previous generations, including mine. A third of the fans worldwide follow the Super League clubs, the 10per cent follows footballers, not clubs, and the most worrying stat is that those between 16 and 24 years old have no interest in football whatsoever.

"The Super League simulates what young people do on digital platforms in competition with Call of Duty, FIFA or Fortnite," he continued.

On Monday night, Real Madrid President Florentino Perez said the Super League would save football.

"Football is experiencing a huge crisis of appeal to the new generations and the pandemic has accelerated the process," Agnelli claimed.

"We don't fear isolation. I fear much more a monopoly that prevents clubs and players from exercising their freedom under the EU Treaty. We must get out of this monopoly situation.

"We trust our initiative and we believe it will succeed in the short term. The dialogue with European institutions is open, we are exercising the freedom provided by the EU treaty.

"We wrote a letter to FIFA and UEFA Presidents to open a dialogue, the Super League goes ahead, if they offer us something, we'll evaluate it.

"For almost ten years, I have been working in international sports institutions that control competitions, with a de facto monopoly, without bearing any economic risk.

"Clubs are the only ones facing economic risks. I couldn't make them [UEFA] understand how high the financial risk is for clubs that generate value for all football stakeholders. Or maybe they never wanted to understand it, we'll try to reach an agreement with FIFA and UEFA," he insisted.

"I think they have not understood the impact of the pandemic in the world of football. UEFA is an institution that has no economic risk in the industry it regulates and with which it competes, it is important to underline this conflict of interest.

"UEFA manages and sells our rights without facing any economic risk and is a rival of us. FIFA and UEFA make big profits with our players, but they didn't help us in times of crisis. They must choose if they want to be regulators or commercial promoters."

Inter and Milan had initially agreed to join the project, but withdrew last night, leaving Juventus alone with three La Liga clubs.

"The agreements with Inter and Milan have been natural, the relationship with Marotta has always been a good one," Agnelli said.

"We lived amazing years together. Now, I can't confirm JP Morgan called Napoli, the board will decide if there will be space for other Italian clubs.

"We are creating the most beautiful project in the world and this reassures me. I am concerned about the populism that hinders dialogue on this initiative.”

Juventus coach Andrea Pirlo revealed Agnelli talked about the Super League with his players.

"The players wanted to know when the competition would begin. They don't fear they won't be able to play for their national teams again. I am firmly at the helm of Juventus, who says the contrary brings me good luck,” Agnelli concluded.

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