To those at UEFA, there is a way where we can give the big teams what they want, but integrate promotion and relegation so that it is not a closed shop.
UEFA need to drive a 16 team Super League, two groups of eight with the top four in each reaching a single leg quarter final (highest rank plays at home) before a finals competition in late May, of semi-finals and final played in a neutral location across Europe.
The first season of its inauguration would be made up of the top sixteen highest ranked co-efficient of UEFA, thereafter the bottom teams in each group will be replaced by the seasons Champions League and replacement for the Europa League, the Champions Cup winner.
Whilst the best 16 get to play for the new super league title, the remaining winners of their domestic competitions will play in the Champions League. 32 teams (after qualifiers) in eight groups of four before two leg Quarter Finals and Semi Finals with a single match final.
The Champions Cup would include all domestic cup winners in each of the 55 UEFA nations and the highest ranked teams not otherwise participating in European competition, as well as the Champions League losing qualifiers prior to the competitions group stage.
Round one (after qualifiers) will include 128 teams playing two-legs, round two 64 teams ditto, round three 32 teams, round four 16 teams, before a quarter final, semi-final and single leg final.
Whilst the Champions League will play second fiddle to the UEFA Super League, the winner of the competition will vary by country more often and offer a more widespread variety with one entrant per nation, whilst in countries where a champion is already participating in the European Super League, the highest ranked ‘non ESL playing’ club would enter the UCL.
The Champions Cup would feature ‘everybody else’ that qualifies for Europe through their domestic season in a straight knockout tournament, level par with the UCL, the UCC will reward success for domestic cup winners as well as the ‘next’ best highest ranked club teams in competition that haven’t already qualified, the winners of each trophy then will participate in the following years European Super League, the relegated teams will have to then qualify for the UCL or UCC via their domestic leagues.
This is a simple philosophy to look after those at the top of the game, whilst giving those across Europe, rewarded for their success the chance to participate with them. Nobody has questioned that UEFA don’t need to change and improve competition, this would allow in all areas, a two or three tiered system for teams to get to the top, and be rewarded for success.
Whilst the rich will unfortunately get richer by the improved funds on offer to the European Super League (let them even negotiate their own individual TV deals for it), this must be also spread down in prize funds across the three competitions, the chance to win silverware in the Champions League and Cup, for those elsewhere in Europe, will be better than ever, and that can only be a good thing, as we look to decrease the gap on the elite which as only increased, since the inauguration of the existing Champions League format.