While only Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus remain stuck on the idea of ESL, Liverpool and the others have tried to rally to the governing body of European football after the idea of ESL was completely rejected. ESL by fans and the wider football community when they were revealed in April.
Part of the clubs’ motivation to enter the ESL plot was that they believed the Champions League reforms did not go far enough, despite a number of changes introduced that would benefit clubs, including more games. that would generate more income and potential earnings. as well as the introduction of “safety net” qualifying places for the biggest leagues.
Safety nets could be removed after being included in Champions League reforms from 2024, according to a Times report.
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According to initial plans, two Champions League spots would be awarded to teams that missed the regular season but had the best performances historically in European competition.
Had this rule been in place last season, Tottenham Hotspur would have qualified for the Champions League despite being seventh, behind Leicester City and West Ham United.
UEFA is keen not to give more leeway to clubs who have sought to separate and have sought to strengthen their resolve when it comes to making changes to the best competition in European football, undoubtedly feeling emboldened by football’s rejection of the plans when they were made public. in April.
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Liverpool qualified for the Champions League this season finishing third last season, but the situation at the start of the year looked grim and the Reds, hampered by a crisis of defensive injuries, were in danger of missing not only the Champions. League but European football as a whole.
Missing out on Champions League football can have a major impact on finances, with the competition worth at least £ 50million for the Reds and over £ 100million if they have a deep run. When they won it in 2019, they made £ 113million through their efforts.
While the intention is to qualify for the competition in the top four each season, having a safety net through their long and illustrious European history would have been reassuring for Reds owners Fenway Sports Group.
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But, anxious not to give in to the wishes of the dozen clubs that were plotting to launch ESL, UEFA is now ready to reaffirm its control.
The Times report states that “the UEFA Executive Committee, which approves the changes, is due to meet next month and could then make a final decision.” Any changes will take effect from 2024 and last for at least nine seasons.
Further issues will be discussed at the Swiss summit next month, with financial fair play reforms also on the table, as UEFA seeks to introduce a ‘luxury tax’ on clubs that break the regulations.