GENEVA: The European Club Association, whose chair Nasser Al-Khelaifi is a member of the UEFA executive committee, has welcomed the European football federation’s new financial sustainability regulations.
A statement described the new rules as “an important milestone for the entire European club landscape.”
It added: “ECA welcomes the new regulations as a vital step towards addressing the most pressing financial challenges faced by European clubs of all sizes.
“These new regulations offer a genuine path to stability and sustainability for clubs of all sizes because they directly tackle costs for the first time, while also retaining, evolving and strengthening the most effective elements of the current financial fair play system.”
Key elements of the new Regulations include the following:
The ‘Squad Cost Rule’ caps fees and salaries of men’s first-team squads at 70% of revenue over a calendar year, which will help ensure clubs operate in a genuinely sustainable manner that is capable of absorbing external shocks.
The simplification of the ‘Break-Even Rule’ will better reflect the reality of different clubs’ structures, national regulations and business models.
The increase in acceptable deviation adjustment from €10m to €20m per year will encourage sensible, sustainable owner investment.
The overdue payables rule, one of the key successes of FFP, is further strengthened through increased assessment frequency and more stringent potential sanctions.
The shift to reporting over a calendar year and transparency on financial and sporting sanctions will allow breaches to be detected and sanctioned much more quickly and efficiently, with the combination of financial and sporting sanctions serving as a significant control mechanism.
Most importantly, both UEFA and ECA will continue to monitor the impact and effectiveness of the regulations and move quickly to amend them as and when required.
ECA is pleased that these new Financial Sustainability Regulations have been formally approved. They were developed through genuine collaboration and exhaustive consultation between ECA and UEFA, along with other stakeholders, which ensured that the whole spectrum of ECA members’ individual views and circumstances were presented and discussed.
As a result of this collaborative approach, the new Regulations offer a genuine, considered and comprehensive pathway to financial sustainability for all European clubs.
Michel Verschueren, a Belgian executive board member and chair of ECA’s finance working group, said: “Nobody could have predicted the seismic external shock of the Covid-19 pandemic and in these challenging times, no one can know what the future will hold for the European Club landscape.
“However, this new model of monitoring and collaboration will help ensure that the financial sustainability regulations are able to evolve and remain relevant and effective for all clubs.
“With these new regulations in place, European club football remains at the pinnacle of sport and entertainment while ensuring a stable, sustainable and inclusive football pyramid. We are pleased that ECA – representing clubs of all shapes and sizes – has played its part in this historic new chapter for European football.”