Real Madrid president Florentino Perez believes football is ‘dying’ and claims the European Super League will come as one of the ways to resurrect the sport.
The Spanish giants were among a dozen sides in April last year who signed up to a proposed breakaway league, which collapsed following backlash from supporters once the idea came into the public domain.
Speaking about how the European Super League can improve the football climate, Perez said: “To fix a problem, you have to first recognize that you have a problem. Our beloved sport is sick. It’s losing its leadership as a global sport.”
“We mustn’t be confused by the impact of Real Madrid’s (Champions League) run (last season) when we were involved in seven games of the highest intensity and interest.
“That’s why we believe European competitions must change, to offer fans top-level games year-round between the strongest teams, with the best players competing.
“The Super League format will never be an obstacle stopping a constructive and free dialogue to address the very serious problems in European football. Problems that we must urgently solve.”
Perez believes it is a big surprise that Real and Liverpool, two of Europe’s top sides domestically and overseas, have played against each other just nine times in 67 years of European competition.
He added: “(In men’s tennis, Rafael) Nadal and (Roger) Federer played each other 40 times in 15 years. So far, Nadal and (Novak) Djokovic have faced each other 59 times in 16 years.
“Is this boring? These historic clashes have grown tennis as a whole.
“In football the figures are staggering. It turns out we have played Liverpool, a historic team with six European Cups, only nine times in 67 years. And only three times in Madrid.”
The Super League idea might continue to look controversial but when you take a closer look at the comments made by Perez, he does have a genuine point.
In actual fact, UEFA and FIFA are only against the Super League idea because they will not have a direct say in the allocation of funds involved in such a mega competition. Or why else is FIFA in support of a Super League for African football but not in Europe?
More questions come to mind as well like why FIFA also chose to accept a World Cup bid from Qatar despite bids from other countries? For now, the Super League seems like the evil in the eyes of many but an objective look will indeed show that Perez has a valid point.