Search icon


29th Jan 2016

Champions League revamp could guarantee spots for the likes of Man United and Liverpool

Power struggle

Patrick McCarry

This doesn’t seem very fair at all.

A glance around the to divisions of European football will tell you that Manchester United, Chelsea, Liverpool, AC Milan, Roma, Valencia, Schalke 04 and Lyon all have a fight on to make next season’s Champions League.

Reported moves behind the scenes at UEFA will not be able to help those clubs this time out but that could all change by 2018.

Power brokers from some of Europe’s biggest club sides are seeking to drive through a new Champions League competition structure that will see their sides guaranteed spots.

The idea is to assure places for sides with historical success in European competitions.

Cynics, or realists, may look at it as old money, and successful clubs striving to protect their interests while clubs like Leicester City, Napoli, Wolfsburg and Eibar push for qualification to Europe’s elite competition.

The Sun has run an extensive piece on the plans, which they claim are being made during the power vacuum left by the suspension of president Michel Platini. When contacted by the paper, the UEFA reply was somewhat unsettling and lacking an outright denial:

“UEFA constantly reviews the format of its competitions in close consultation with stakeholders, including the European Club Association.

“There are no concrete proposals on the table at this stage as we have just begun a new three-year cycle (2015-18) for club competitions. There is therefore no further comment to be made at this stage.”

No concrete plans but it appears like some pretty detailed schemes are being forged.