Atletico Madrid President Enrique Cerezo has been startingly honest about his views on the currently defunct Superleague project, which he believes would have been good for Spanish football.
After the Premier League clubs pulled out due to fan protests, they were followed by the Serie A clubs, with the exception of Juventus, and Atletico Madrid. La Vecchia Signora pulled out this year, leaving just Real Madrid and Barcelona left in the Superleague.
Many thought that in the case of Los Colchoneros, it was also due to fan discontent, and the Atletico squad communicated that they were pleased it had not gone ahead, while the club themselves released a statement claiming that it was ‘essential’ that all of Atletico was in agreement.
Yet speaking to Onda Cero, Cerezo explained that the Superleague was in his view the last chance to keep the Premier League clubs in check financially.
“I think the Super League is good for Spanish football. With there being no Super League, the English have won. The Financial Fair Play was not fixed, and it benefits them. The proof being that they have taken all the best players.”
“Atletico left because we didn’t want UEFA to sanction us, and without the English teams, there was no way to continue.”
There is little doubt that with UEFA’s weak enforcement of spending controls, and the Premier League’s gargantuan TV rights deal, English teams have a major financial advantage over rother major clubs in Europe. The question for many will be whether handing the keys over to Florentino Perez would have been an equally false step, with little to say what rules would have been enforced.