Florentino Perez admitted that he was ‘disappointed’ the Super League has failed in his first interview since the implosion of the project.
The Real Madrid president had been appointed president of the newly-created Super League on Sunday, and gloated about the new European competition in an interview late on Monday. But, as soon as the Super League looked to be gathering some momentum, fans, players, pundits and managers made their feelings regarding the project heard.
Fan protests in particular are said to have led to the six English clubs – Man Utd, Liverpool, Man City, Tottenham, Chelsea and Arsenal – pulling out of the competition on Tuesday, while Atletico Madrid, and Inter followed suit on Wednesday.
Now with just Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus and AC Milan left, Florentino Perez seemingly admitted that the Super League was a non-starter for now in an interview with El Laguero, starting off the discussion by insisting he was just the president of Real Madrid:
“President of Real Madrid and of the Super League? No, no…president of Real Madrid is fine.”
Here’s the key points made throughout the rest of the interview.
“We were working last night until 1am. We have been working many years on this project. Have not explained it very well, perhaps.
“I am a bit sad, disappointed. We have been working three years on this project, on fighting the current financial situation in Spanish football. It is easy to understand – you cannot touch La Liga, so you look for more money midweek and the Champions League format is obsolete.”
“I have never seen aggression greater on the part of the president of UEFA and other presidents of Liga, it was orchestrated, it surprised it all. Never seen anything like it – insults, threats, as if we had killed someone, killed football.
“There was a campaign, totally manipulated, that we were going to finish the national leagues. That we were ending football, it was terrible. But we were working for football to survive.”
“The problems is they killed us the very next day, with terrible aggression. We have made some mistakes for sure. But they knew what we were going to do, and were waiting for us. Those who do not want to lose their privileges.”
“There was someone in the English six clubs who did not have much interest. That started to affect the others, there was fear. One of the English clubs was never really convinced.”
“The English clubs tried to do something, but they were being told they were killing football. But there is no other solution, than the Super League. Or somebody invents something else.
“They are leaving due to UEFA putting on a show, which surprised me. I don’t want to get into it with the UEFA president, but he needs to be able to talk. It was like we had thrown an atomic bomb. They did not let us explain, as they did not want anything to change.”
“We are just working on saving football, after this pandemic. Madrid income falling from 900m to 600m this year. We have worked very hard on something that would satisfy everyone – and we did expect such a response.”
“It cannot be that in England, the six lose money, and 14 make money. In Spain the top three lose money, and the others make money. It cannot continue – at the moment the rich are those who are losing money.”
“This is a pyramid, and the money runs down, there would be money for everyone. If Nadal plays Federer, everyone watches, if Nadal plays the number 80 in the world, nobody watches.”
“There are games that nobody watches – the truth is I struggle to watch them. In Spain, in England, in Italy.”
“A big guy wears a big suit, a small guy wears a small suit. Everyone has to be comfortable with the suit they wear. And the reality comes from the TV viewer figures. This is not capricious, I am just trying to help.”
“Juventus and Milan have not left. Barca are thinking about it. Maybe we can change it a bit – that the top four in England enter, the top four in Spain. The important thing is that the big teams play each other, so the kids will watch football.”
“Somebody has to give us another format, to earn more money. As without earning more money, this will all die.
“The contracts are signed by serious people, businessmen who know this world. We agreed last night to wait and to try and explain better, and we are open to other ideas.”
“The English PM said things, then the fans…people wanted to damage us. But when all this passes, and we see the reality, let’s see what happens. These clubs are going to lose millions of euros, and cannot do that, apart from those in England.”
“The founder clubs believed in this project. It is not dead. We will keep working.”