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Smaller clubs to get greater share of UEFA pie

Smaller clubs who do not qualify for European competition are set to receive a greater share of revenue from UEFA from next season under a new agreement announced on Wednesday. 

UEFA’s new deal with the European Club Association (ECA), which will run from 2024 to 2030, will “bolster long-term stability and sustainable growth in European club football,” the federation said in a statement. 

The change coincides with a new format in the lucrative Champions League, Europa League and Conference League which will move from groups to a mini-league system in 2024.

Under the new conditions, teams that do not qualify for European club competitions will share seven percent of the overall pie, mainly the revenue from television, rather than the current four percent.

That will raise the sum to 440 million euros per season and 1.32 billion euros over the entire cycle, the body said. 

The share given to clubs eliminated in the qualifying phase will remain unchanged at three percent, while the allocations for clubs taking part in the three competitions will also change. 

“The new distribution system for participating clubs will give greater focus to participation (from 25 percent to 27.5 percent will be shared equally) and performance (from 30 percent to 37.5 percent),” UEFA said. 

The two specific features of the European system — the club’s home country’s share of television rights and the “coefficient” reflecting each team’s historical performances — will be reduced in importance, from 45 percent today to 35 percent from next season.

UEFA said it would unveil the details of the new system at a later date. 

The agreement between UEFA and the ECA, which sets out the framework for their joint management of competitions for each European cycle, comes at a time of intense debate over the concentration of financial resources and trophies in the hands of a handful of clubs, to the detriment of the vast majority of continental teams. 

Last year, UEFA promised to make “sporting fairness” one of its main priorities.

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