Lazio President Claudio Lotito is at the centre of controversy after leaked phone-calls allegedly show him claiming to wield power over governing bodies.
The Aquile patron represents Serie A in the federation, but has been criticised by the likes of Demetrio Albertini for holding more sway than FIGC chief Carlo Tavecchio.
According to a leaked phonecall between Lotito and a director of Lega Pro side Ischia Isolaverde, published by La Repubblica, Lega Serie A President Maurizio Beretta and Lega Italiana Calcio Professionistico Mario Macalli have less power than Lotito.
“Do you think Maurizio Beretta decides things in the Lega Serie A?” Lotito is reported to have asked Pino Iodice.
“Do you know what he decides? Nothing. And the President [Macalli]?
“In a year and a half, nothing.”
Lotito also stated his displeasure at the prospect of the likes of Carpi and Frosinone winning promotion to Serie A, saying it would jeopardise television revenue.
“If Carpi come up… if teams come up who are not worth a cent, in two or three years we won’t have a penny.
“I’ve done well in selling the TV rights, we brought in €1.2 billion thanks to my skill. I managed to find an agreement between Sky and Mediaset, which in 10 years no-one had been able to do.
“If in three years we have Latina, Frosinone, who would buy those rights? They don’t even know where Frosinone is.”
Lotito has responded to the leak, insisting that he was making a valid point.
“The system is in trouble,” the Lazio patron warned.
“I didn’t put pressure on anyone, I just raised the issue.
“I stand by what I said, it was premeditated because I knew the person would record the phonecall. Go and look at Iodice’s record and see who we’re dealing with.
“He’s a bad luck omen, every team for which he has worked has gone bankrupt.
“I simply said, in relation to Beretta and Macalli that it’s useless to get rid of the President, because the President has no power.
“Not Beretta because he’s Beretta, but as President of the Lega. Beretta is there to oversee, what matters is the assembly.
“Decisions are made by the 20 Presidents of Serie A.”
Meanwhile, Iodice has also responded, warning he has another recording in which Lotito threatens him.
“This is only one recording,” Iodice revealed in an interview with Radio Ies.
“There’s another one in which Lotito threatens me. This [leaked] one is from January 28, where he says some very serious things, among which that Beretta has no power and Carpi or Frosinone being promoted would be bad for television rights.
“Unfortunately, many things in football are decided in secret rooms.
“I left it to La Repubblica to publish the conversation to give everyone a shock. I hope today some decisions are taken, and some influential football people get involved.
“This is not simply a matter for the Lega Pro, this is a black mark against Italian football.
“I hope there are weighty interventions, the delusions of omnipotence that this character has are sending Italian football down the drain.
“If you’ve heard Lotito’s words, you’ve heard his arrogance, he’s an individual who believes he is the totem of Italian football, the one who can make or break you.
“I am preparing a dossier, to which I will attach this recording.
“I’m not looking for a position at Lazio or Salernitana, despite some of his representatives contacting me. I don’t want a place in the Lega.
“I don’t want seats, I want to clean things up. Lotito must be marginalised.
“And I’ll say more, if I had asked he would have taken me with him, trying to get me on his side.”
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