NEWS
Wednesday November 28 2012
Platini reshaping Champions League?

Michel Platini has admitted that UEFA are currently considering reformatting the structure of the Champions League.

Barcelona President Sandro Rosell has spoken for the past year on his hopes of seeing European football’s premier competition expanded to 64 teams and UEFA President Platini has conceded that it is up for debate.

The suggestion is also apparent that the Europa League could be abandoned altogether.

“There is an ongoing debate to determine what form the European competitions will have between 2015 and 2018. We’re discussing it, we will make a decision in 2014. Nothing is decided yet,” reflected the head of European game’s governing body to ouest-france.fr.

Platini also had a say on foreign ownership in the game, suggesting that it was not a movement that he was fond of.

“I cannot afford, in a liberal world, to question the origin of the owners, even if I regret that clubs falling into the hands of foreign capital.

“Because for me, the identity of a club is its region, its supporters. I am not in favour of globalization, but legally, I cannot do anything about it.”

The former Juventus player also commented on the introduction of goal-line officials across Europe.

“They have been adopted in the Champions League and now the Italians have them too and are very happy. Four pairs of eyes are better to watch. After that, if the referees make a mistake then it is not my fault.”

Platini made clear, though, that goal-line referees are a much cheaper option going forward than goal-line technology, coming in at an annual cost of €2.3m, whilst introducing technology into the game has been priced at €32m in the first year alone and a total spend of €54m in the first five years.

Platini could see his record currently joint-held with Lionel Messi of three consecutive Ballon d’Or wins broken by the Argentine this year, if he collects the 2012 edition.

“Records are meant to be broken. Thierry Henry has scored more goals than me for the France national team… If Messi wins the Ballon d’Or then it will be because he has earned it.”

Football Italia website