Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has been warned by UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin after the German coach criticised the reformulation of the Champions League.
Last week, the idea to implement the new European Super League received massive backlash from fans around the continent. In reply to the Super League, UEFA also planned to newly format the current version of the Champions League. And they have also drawn criticism for their plans.
The proposal by UEFA is that the Champions League will increase from a 32 club competition to a 36 club competition. This will result in the traditional group stages replaced by a single league format, increasing the number of games of each team.
This has not gone well among many people involved in the competition. Klopp is one of them. The Liverpool manager has been outspoken about the European Super League and the new Champions League format.
Klopp slams new Champions League format:
Jurgen Klopp has always spoken about the tight schedules of the teams playing in the Champions Leagues. And the plan to increase the number of games in the competition has made him question the decision of UEFA.
Speaking after Liverpool’s latest 1-1 draw against Newcastle United in the Premier League, Klopp said:
“Ten games rather than six and no idea where to put them in. The only people who never get asked are the coaches, the players and the supporters. UEFA didn’t ask us, the Super League didn’t ask us. It’s just always ‘play more games’.
The new Champions League, what’s the reason for that? Money…I have no idea how we’re going to deal with even more games.You can’t have 20 teams in a league, two cup competitions, 10 international games before Christmas. These things aren’t possible.”
Ceferin hits back at Klopp:
UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin has hit back at Klopp, saying the players and coaches will have to accept a pay cut if the competition remains as it is. But the Slovenian is open to alternative ideas surrounding the format of the Champions League. Speaking to the Daily Mail, Ceferin said:
“Some coaches and players said too many matches. There can always be less matches but also the salaries of the players and coaches have to adapt. You cannot generate less and earn more all the time. I read some people saying, ‘We don’t want more matches.’ I am fine with that, really I am. If the Champions League stays as it is, it will be the best competition in the world.
Our reforms came about because clubs need help responding the financial crisis. We can carry on as we are but clubs will go out of business. And who does that hurt the most? Their fans.
So, while I understand what some people are saying, I’d ask them ‘What is your solution?’ We believe the reforms we are making have advantages for everyone. But we have been clear they are not fully set in stone so, if those people have better ideas that safeguard the future of football as well as ours, I will listen.”