Monday April 19 2021
Florentino Perez explains reasons behind Super League

Real Madrid and Super League President Florentino Perez says the new competition 'will save football' as 'clubs have lost over €5 billion' due to the COVID pandemic.

Perez gave an interview to El Chiringuito on Monday night, revealing the reasons behind the Super League.

The tournament had been announced 24 hours prior by 12 European clubs, including Serie A's Juventus, Inter and Milan.

"We've lost €5 billion combined, Real Madrid alone have lost €400m," he said.

"Many important clubs in Spain, Italy and UK must find a solution to a terrible financial situation.

"When you have no more income apart from TV rights, the solution is to play more attractive games with fans that can watch them from all around the world.

"We concluded that, if we play a Super League instead of the Champions League we would be able to alleviate what we have lost.

"Football needs to change and to be more attractive globally. The Champions League has lost the interest it had in 1950. Changes happen and even at that time FIFA and UEFA were against it. But that's how football changed," he added.

"There are low-quality games right now. A Barcelona-Manchester United tie is more attractive than Manchester United facing an average team in the Champions League.

"We have fans everywhere in the world. That's where money are coming from. Money is for everyone. This is a pyramid. If the top clubs have money, they can generate incomes for everyone.  

"One of the reasons we are doing this is to save football, to save it in general," Florentino insisted.

"We want to start as soon as possible, we want to talk to UEFA and FIFA, but they should not get angry.

"UEFA was working to another format which, first of all, I did not understand and did not produce the income needed to save football.

"The new Champions League format for 2024 is something absurd. I have no personal interest in making this Super League. I am not the owner of Real but only the president because the members own the club. I only want to save football and when I say 'save football', I mean save everyone."

Perez hit back at UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin who had said he has "never seen a person lie as much" as Juventus patron Andrea Agnelli.

"President Ceferin insulted Agnelli today, it is not possible. It's crazy to discuss a president of a world club like Juventus. This is something unacceptable, UEFA must change, we don't want a president who insults other presidents," Perez said.

PSG, Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund had reportedly refused to join the Super League, but Perez revealed PSG had not been invited at all.

"PSG were not invited, as of today. We haven't even spoken to German clubs. We are now 12 clubs, we want to become 15 clubs. If PSG and Bayern Munich refuse, the Super League won’t be cancelled," he claimed.

"What we want, which we inherited from Bernábéu, is to save football so that we can live the next 20 years in peace as the situation is very dramatic."

The Real Madrid President denied the Super League is a closed circle and said clubs like Napoli and Roma could have a chance to join the competition in the future.

"The 15 founding clubs are the ones that matter the most in terms of entertainment. Other clubs, such as Napoli or Roma, will have a chance to join the competition one year or another."

UEFA threatened players participating in the tournament would be banned from other competitions such as the World Cup and the Euros. According to reports in Italy, the clubs still involved in this season's Champions League could be banned on Friday.

"Real Madrid and other Super League clubs will not be excluded from this 2020-21 Champions League. It won't happen, the law protects us. This is impossible," Florentino commented.

"This Super League is not for the rich, but it's to save football. If this continues, football will disappear and by 2024 we would already be dead. This is the only way to save everyone: big, medium and small clubs," he concluded.