Tuesday's soccer news starts with European Club Association and Juventus president Andrea Agnelli making one economic issue clear. UEFA will likely refund Champions League and Europa League broadcast rights holders around 575 million euros. Agnelli made that statement at the organization's 24th general assembly with UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin present.
"We have seen a £330million rebate in the Premier League. We have seen a downturn in the Bundesliga domestic rights of about 200 million euros. And we are in the process of finalizing the account with UEFA with a reduction of around 575 million euros for the international club competitions, and that is all money that is not going to be distributed. We are looking at a revenue decrease of approximately 4 billion euros in the next two years."
With broadcast rights one of the primary drivers for the economic increases in European soccer, it's a substantial concern. In an era of high dollar figure transfers and the Premier League tax where European clubs are well aware of how much money English clubs have, this drastic change in circumstance will resonate across the board. The lack of gate revenue and expected decreases in sponsorship only adds to that overall problem.
Agnelli referred to all of European soccer being "in the middle of crisis management. "There are estimates that say we are going to see a shrinking of the valuations of the transfer market of 20-30%, and that is evidently less money circulating. This will potentially turn out to be a cash crisis for most of the clubs."
Ceferin also spoke at the general assembly, saying, "We have been working since day one, hand in hand with the ECA and European Leagues, with one objective. Put football back on track. None of us would have had enough fantasy to imagine a plot like the one we have been living, and are still living, this year. Who could imagine at the beginning of 2020 what we would have seen? If I had been sleeping for a few months and now waking up, I would think I was in a movie."
The rest of Europe's major leagues will restart this month with Ligue 1 already playing. The limited offseason is a necessity to try and get the schedule closer to normal. UEFA was the only confederation to play games that count during the September international break, starting the Nations League. Aside from a positive coronovirus test from France and PSG player Kylian Mbappe, there haven't been any major disruptions in Europe during the current window.
UEFA made it public late last month that they weren't going to let the pandemic unduly dictate the Nations League schedule. OIf a game can't be quickly rescheduled, UEFA plans to use forfeits if one team is responsible or the always popular drawing of lots if responsibility isn't clear.
Also in the soccer news, The National Soccer Hall of Fame announced that Carlos Bocanegra will be the only member of the Class of 2020. Bocanegra had 110 appearances with the USMNT, a stallwart in its defense during a club career that took him from MLS to England, France, Scotland, and Spain. Bocanegra is the technical director at Atlanta United and serves on the board of the US Soccer Federation as an athlete representative.
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