Wednesday’s soccer news starts with FIFA putting a price point on what soccer will lose due to the pandemic. According to reports, that number is $14 billion. FIFA is using that figure to explain the immediate need for world soccer’s governing body to help its member federations.
“If you look at the breakdown of losses in absolute and relative terms, European clubs and member associations were most impacted in absolute figures,” Olli Rehn, the head of FIFA’s relief committee, said. “But relatively those outside Europe have struggled more, especially in Latin America, mainly as a result of revenue mix and season timing. Smaller countries that are dependent on Fifa will actually be hit least.”
Money as the driver in world soccer is no surprise, but it puts all involved in an interesting situation when the money isn’t flowing. Though European soccer has done its best to return to play, it’s happening without fans and without the same push it had prior to the shutdown. That’s showing up in broadcast and sponsorship deals with no clear path to a return to normal short of a vaccine.
Concacaf’s situation with the postponement to the rescheduled start of World Cup qualifying puts this into clear focus. Nobody knows the situation for the October or November international windows, travel, or moving teams around confederations or the world. That’s weighing on the federations, confederations, and FIFA itself regardless of their current financial situations.
In early August, when FIFA made the appointment, Rehn said, “FIFA has worked with health as its first priority, and rightly so. A good indicator of the situation is that at the worst point in early spring, all but four of the 211 FIFA member associations stopped [playing]…. In the name of solidarity, FIFA started to act to help mitigate the consequences suffered by associations and clubs as well as other stakeholders within football. Much due to the fact that significant economical and administrative reforms have been made at FIFA, the Federation stands on very solid ground now, economically. That will now be used to help the sport recover from the coronavirus crisis.”
Moving to England’s League Cup, DeAndre Yedlin’s Newcastle shutting out Blackburn 1-0. Ryan Fraser scored in the 35th minute with Mark Gillespie keeping the clean sheet with two saves.
“The only bit of quality we showed all night was the goal,” Newcastle manager Steve Bruce said. “It was a great ball, a great run and Ryan stuck it in well.”
Duane Holmes wasn’t in the squad for Derby County’s 2-1 home loss to Preston North End. Jason Knight put Derby up in the 51st minute, but Mike te Wierik saw red in the 55th. PNE scored in the 79th and stoppage time.
DW’s Felix Tamsut questions the push in German soccer to allow fans. Bundesliga Fanatic’s Mathew Burt asks about the away goal rule. The Athletic’s Dermot Corrigan on the issues already present in La Liga. BBC Sport’s Jay Freeman reports on the end of Macclesfield Town. American Soccer Now’s Brian Sciaretta talks to USMNT U-20 coach Antony Hudson about the situation with the team.
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