Welcome to the battle of football, the pulse between the major companies and the sentiments of fans organized in defending clubs as assets of the community. The formation of the sport of the future is being carried out at the upper echelons, as falling from the grace of the great angel model attempts to renew itself with the attempts of the most powerful entities to create the Premier League, a gambit UEFA intends to avoid changing to eliminate Financial Fair Play. On the street, the action of the masses begins with the connection with political initiatives. The wave that is gaining strength in the UK, which has a legislative framework in Germany with 50+1 and in Spain, is beginning to take shape in the discussion, still in an embryonic stage, of the new sports law. With the ultimate goal of democratizing club government, the amendments seek to provide fans with greater tools to control the management of institutions with a representational depth beyond football.
Headwinds blow for club owners. For the first time, the origin of the fortunes of the majority of the shareholders is significant, as well as the disappointment of the masses before the promises of short-term glory that turn against wealthy owners, from the Parque de los Príncipes to the Mestalla. The invasion of Ukraine ended the football adventure of Roman Abramovich at Chelsea, the most skilled of the group of oligarchs entering the sector who ended up being singled out for his close ties to Vladimir Putin. Born in the neoliberal wave after the dissolution of the Soviet Union under Boris Yeltsin, Abramovich’s legacy participated from a toy factory in a hand-picked list of beneficiaries of the Great National Wealth Auction (gas, oil, aluminum, telecom…). On the other hand, it did not even prevent the combination of Messi, Neymar and Mbappe Nasser Al-Khelaifi, the owner of Paris Saint-Germain, from facing the stress of his fans, who demanded his departure in a message from the ultras group: the team is nothing more than a group of “stars” who barely complement each other ” “You are seen more at Fashion Week than meeting up with representatives of your hobby.”
José Antonio Pérez, club president, Levante confirmed: “It’s an important moment and success will depend a lot on how popular fans participate, but the democratization of clubs will not be a quick or homogeneous process.” EMV. Libertad VCF, the heart of the main opposition to Peter Lim at FC Valencia. The League announced yesterday that it has submitted to Deputy Prime Minister Joan Baldovi a set of proposals aimed at reforming the sports law. The aim is to ensure that clubs “respect their fans and are progressively democratizing” and implement mechanisms under corporate law to control club governance. Among the measures, he highlighted “a ban on major shareholders from dealing with players and their economic rights. The obligation to sell shares after a conviction for an institutional crime, with fan preference and the election of an independent director who represents the fans on club boards and is chosen by them.” “We have to preserve,” Perez adds, That the clubs “return to being an engine for the promotion of sport and the identity of the territory”.
FASFE, the federation formed from associations of fans, partners and minority shareholders of nearly thirty Spanish football clubs, is on the same line of protest, which is also in talks with several political parties about proposing amendments to the new law. Emilio Abijon, its president, believes that he faces an opportunity for a historic change, both in Spain and in Europe: “In Spain, clubs have been commercial entities relatively recently, about thirty years ago. There have always been owners in England, but until the beginning of the twenty-first century they were businessmen residing in the region,” asserts Levante-EMV. Abramovich’s landings at Chelsea, the Glazers at Manchester United or Arab sovereign wealth funds changed the rules of the game: “Many have worked From clubs as games for amusement or as a means of laundering regimes that violate basic rights, as in the case of Newcastle, from a Saudi sovereign wealth fund. It seems he doesn’t care. It was not just about the masses not being influenced, but that the owners are so far away from the masses and with their management they end up threatening the very survival of these entities. Uprooting from the city, the region, and its surroundings also appears in the seven years of Lim’s administration of Valencia, “whose wealth does not come from industrial tradition, but merely speculation,” Pérez notes. “In a commercial sense, you can close the club and sell the stadium. In England there have been cases where a club is left in a state of weakness, moves and changes its headquarters, and tens of thousands of fans are left without a club that is a part of their lives.”
“No one will do Fallas SA”
The lever for change stems from recognizing teams as “socially and culturally superior entities with a commitment to sustaining it.” In this sense, the protection of football entities must be ensured, due to their repercussions, as well as the protection of buildings due to their architectural value. “No one thought the faults were Fallas SA,” and that festival customs, without any local counterweight, could be changed from other latitudes. FASFE is involved in the European “Win It On The Pitch” (WIP) signature collection where UEFA is urged to protect “clubs, their communities and their competitions”. In the face of the new sports law, they aspire to highlight the role of club owners as “temporary custodians of community assets of significant value to millions of followers”, as well as demand “suitability tests for owners, bypassing general regulations and restrictions of commercial law” and implementing new rules such as the “Golden Post”, under which Audiences will be given an administrative presence.
Al-Khelaifi (Paris Saint-Germain).
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