Venkatesham elected to ECA board

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Vinai Venkatesham has been elected to the executive board of the European Club Association; the body that represents the interests of professional association football clubs in UEFA

The Arsenal CEO follows in the footsteps of Raul Sanllehi and Ivan Gazidis as the Gunners representative on the committee which features head honchos from a host of the continent’s biggest clubs.

In a statement given to Football.London, an Arsenal representative said: “We’re delighted that Vinai has been appointed to the European Clubs’ association board.

“The ECA represents clubs across Europe and is central to helping shape the future of the game with UEFA and FIFA.”

The ECA broadcast the introduction to its 25th General Assembly live on YouTube today. Amongst other things, Andrea Agnelli, chairman of Juventus and the ECA, touched on the impact of the pandemic on European football and the debates that are taking place behind closed doors about the game’s future, including how to re-engage supporters.

“There are too many games that are not competitive, both at a domestic and international level,” he said before calling on the association’s 200 members to vote in favour of enlarging the Champions League by replacing its existing group stage format with a Swiss-style 36-team mega group.

Go figure.

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Johnny 4 Hats

At least someone’s in Europe next season…

Appels&Pere

brilliant.

Once a gunner

Mark my word Arsenal will be in Europe next season

Johnny 4 Hats

Yeah. Stan will probably register us in Lichtenstein for tax purposes…

Spanish Gooner

You say that as a joke, but it has happened. ENIC International is based in the Bahamas, and they own 85.55% of the scum down the road.

John C

I’m pretty sure Arsenal are registered in Delaware aren’t they?

C.B.

I sincerely hope that we don’t end up with a European super league.

Having to travel around Europe to see away matches and not playing traditional matches in England would both be crap and would be detrimental to football’s future in my opinion.

Plus the possibility we don’t get into the league on current form.

Francesc

Super league should not happen. Best option is to expand the Champions League with more spots to top leagues.

I wish Arsene Wenger was our CEO instead of this guy.

Biggles

I doubt MA or the management team would agree with you. Having a former manager in a prominent position behind the scenes is a real “Ghost of Christmas Past” scenario and wouldn’t be a good move for the club, however appealing initially. I strongly suspect Wenger would never agree to do it, even if asked, because of that.

Magneto

Arsene would not agree to do it because there are no doubt still wounds relating to the manner of his departure from Arsenal that have yet to fully heal, plus, in his mind, he’s already in a much more influential position within the sport that the loves.

Nainsley Aitland Miles

I think Arsene would consider it now that Gazidis and Sanhelli are gone. He loves the club and he obviously knows Mikel and Arteta very well.

assistantref

Both Mikel and Arteta?

Bryan Clayden

Considering Wenger has publicly stated he would of took a board room if offered your wrong on that one

Kris Towson

Anyone else wishing there was actually less football? Fewer stupid international breaks for friendlies or meaningless competitions, smaller European competitions, fewer matches crammed into already tight schedules, fewer injuries, more time for coaches to, you know, coach their teams, etc.? I have to admit that I’m a Gooner and so have a problem, i.e. if they play, I’ll watch. But I’d much rather not taking time from my work day (Canadian time zone here) to watch us play some club I know/care nothing about in a Thursday Europa league tie, and then endure the associated eternity of annoying Sunday/Monday matches.… Read more »

IamaGoober

Personally I am loving the fact there is loads of football on TV at the moment. I remember there being no football on at all was one of the worst things about the first lock down this time last year. However I do agree it just doesn’t feel the same without the fans. Its had a direct effect on the games themselves as well. Its made it all feel a bit surgical and lifeless. In a weird way, I kinda think to an extent all the stats around football at the moment have kinda made it seem the whole thing… Read more »

Nainsley Aitland Miles

We’re playing twice a week which is just about right in my opinion. Be careful what you wish for; next season our only midweek games could be in the Carabao cup.

Kris Towson

Hmm… very good point!

Viv the 🐐

If someone thinks, that the “UEFA Nations League” for example is a good thing, than there is no help in sight. There is much too much football apart from Arsenal in a too tight window. Ok this season is different, but the relentless trying to come up with more games is just a pure money grab.
Let’s see how long everyone will stick around. In the case of a super duper Super League, I’m seriously thinking about just not caring and supporting some Austrian Team. Or whatever Europe looks like after that monstrosity.

allezkev

Too much ‘international football’ methinks, I’m happy with the amount of club football.

Biggles

Good luck to him. I recall that David Dein became President of the old G-14 group of so-called “elite” clubs, although they had to expand it to get us and a few others in because we weren’t first choice picks! The G-14 worried UEFA for a time, given the collective clout of its membership and the ever-present whispers of a European “super league”, but it eventually abolished itself and was replaced by the ECA that Venkatesham has just been elected to. The ECA actually represents over two hundred clubs across Europe. In reality though, more is less (as sometimes happens)… Read more »

C.B.

Swiss Ramble detailed analysis of Arsenal’s 2019-20 financial statements, worth a read.

https://twitter.com/SwissRamble/status/1368899909479436293?s=20

Biggles

Yes, it’s interesting. 2019-20 is the starter. The current, 2020-21, year will be the main course.

C.B.

Although will be smaller than 2019-20, given the loss of revenue and probably bigger losses.

Biggles

Well, we’ll see. I think we’ll be hit very hard this year.

Public Elneny

I guess the one good thing about Kroenke is if we are in trouble financially, he would prevent us from going under or he’d lose his 2 bn+ asset. And it benefits him to get us back into the CL to maximise our market value

I do want us to be self-sustainable and would hate to rely on a billionaire’s ‘generosity’. But it’s good to have a safety net at this point in time

Biggles

I’m wondering how we’ll pay off the £120 million Govt. loan due at the end of May. We needed it in January to fill a Covid hole that the revenue generated since then certainly isn’t going to be able to fill. More club debt seems the obvious solution, but it will be interesting to see.

Nainsley Aitland Miles

I’m just guessing here but I’d imagine through commercial revenues received in the summer – mostly from Adidas (£60m), Emirates (£40m), Visit Rwanda (£10m – if renewed) and there’s a bunch of other smaller commercial revenue payments.

Spanish Gooner

The loan was designed for cash flow issues rather than an actual hole in our accounts. For example, it allowed us to pay off Özil’s contract and make him fuck off 6 months early, and this money will now return to the each month we don’t have to pay his wages

Public Elneny

Perhaps Kroenke could repeat the same trick he/the club used to ‘clear’ the stadium debt to make funds available last Summer – i.e. Kroenke provides all or part of the funds to pay the Gov loan, which the club then owes back to Kroenke. Which they’ll pay him (+ interest ofc) structured at his choosing

It’s all a bit gross, but if it has to be done…

Rich

We’ve had 5 different winners in the last 8 seasons, the competitiveness of our league isn’t a major issue, but could still be improved upon Bayern Munich have won every league title since 2012 PSG have been toppled once in 8 seasons Juventus have won 10 on the bounce Celtic have won 9 on the bounce Barca + Real have won 15 out of the last 16 La Liga’s Under no circumstances should we breakup the success of the PL, for the convenience of the rest of Europe We should learn why we’ve been more successful, and they haven’t And… Read more »

Simon

Why would anyone vote this down? Probably one of the most coherent and observant posts in recents months!

Bim

This welcome-to-the-elite-cub thing feels similar to Tommy being “made” in Goodfellas. I hope it ends better for Vinai.

Biggles

So do I, but the ECA isn’t an “elite club” – it’s the opposite, an “everyone in” club as it represents over 230 clubs across Europe. The organisation the ECA replaced, the so-called G-14, could be described as “elite” because it’s membership was, generally, the biggest clubs (financially and to a lesser extent, trophy-wise) across the continent. Yes, our guy is on the ECA board now but there are an awful lot of “voters” that will decide on what’s actually approved (like the CL qualifying change mentioned in the article).

Baichung Bhutia

Doesn’t he have enough work at Arsenal? Or is this a position that will be beneficial to Arsenal?

Well UEFA have better fax machines than the one in Vinai’s current cubicle. He can also steal pens from the UEFA headquarters and give them to Edu and Arteta.

Spanish Gooner

My personal theory with the European Super League is that everybody bar Juventus and Bayern know they would suffer from it in the long-term, but they’re so scared of it happening without them that they end up supporting it because everybody else seems to do it too. Surely Ed Woodward, for example, knows that United’s reputation (and therefore revenue) would take a battering after they get turned into the West Brom of the ESL.

Diaby's Left Peg

I imagine PSG also, but yeah, we shouldn’t be switching up football for the self serving interest of literally 3 to 5 clubs.

Same with reserve teams down the divisions or kicking out clubs just so the big boys can share fewer crumbs.

Åsmund

I am certain this will make Arsenal Champions 🤓🤓🤓🤓🤓

T-H

I desperately hope the new Champions League structure will put an end to all European Super League plans!