Stephen Ross Henchman Confirmed Worst Fears About European Super League

By Ty Duffy

The five big English clubs met with Stephen Ross’ Relevant Sports to discuss changes to the Champions League. Charlie Stillitano, Relevant Sports’ chairman, spoke to the media. He spoke up for the hard-pressed superclub. He confirmed everyone’s worst fears.

He argued that Champions League inclusion should be based on club stature, rather than performance, because the brands of clubs such as Manchester United built up “the money pot.”

"“What would Manchester United argue: did we create soccer or did Leicester create [it]?” said Stillitano, who met United’s executive vice-chairman, Ed Woodward, on Tuesday. “Let’s call it the money pot created by soccer and the fandom around the world. Who has had more of an integral role, Manchester United or Leicester? It’s a wonderful, wonderful story – but you could see it from Manchester United’s point of view, too.”"

He argued for excluding clubs from lesser leagues, including former European Cup winner PSV Eindhoven.

"“This is going to sound arrogant and it’s the furthest thing from it … but suddenly when you see the teams we have this summer in the ICC you are going to shake your head and say, ‘Isn’t that the Champions League?’” Stillitano said. “No, the Champions League is PSV and Ghent.”"

He argued history was keeping clubs from their true purpose: making money and providing greater exposure for their sponsors.

" Voicing the complaints he hears from clubs, Stillitano said: “I could make a lot more money, I can be a lot more visible, I can help my sponsors out but right now I am locked into doing certain things that are really historic.” "