The New Saints Chief Operating Officer and FAW Council member Ian Williams joined representatives from 145 ECA Member Clubs at the 14th European Club Association two-day General Assembly in Stockholm earlier this week, which centered on the announcement of two landmark collaboration agreements with FIFA and UEFA.
Each agreement will provide clubs with a greater say in the governance models of both FIFA and UEFA recognising clubs’ important contribution to the success of national team football and the development of football as a whole.
‘Clubs in Wales competing in both the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League qualifying rounds will benefit from a 65% increase in solidarity payments, which will have significant impact on the development of clubs in the Welsh Premier League’ commented Williams.
‘There will also be additional solidarity revenue in favour of medium/smaller national leagues throughout Europe for the development of young players’ he added.
The ECA and UEFA have agreed a revolutionary club distribution mechanism based on fixed percentages. The key objectives were to reduce the ratio between Champions League and Europa League, to increase the Qualifying Round Share and to revise the leagues’ share distribution concept. The new percentage-based system ensures that every stakeholder will benefit proportionally from the competitions’ continued growth in the future.
The ECA – FIFA agreement will see the creation of the FIFA Professional Football Department, composed of FIFA, ECA and player representatives. The new body will serve as a platform to discuss all matters related to professional football, and will make recommendations to the FIFA Committees.
The renewed Memorandum of Understanding between the ECA and UEFA secures two seats for ECA Club Representatives on the UEFA Executive Committee – first as “co-opted” members, then as full members (subject to the revision of the UEFA Statutes in 2016). This is a major achievement for ECA and a strong statement of UEFA’s commitment to modern and dynamic governance models. The ECA Club Representatives to join the UEFA Executive Committee are yet to be confirmed.
The details of the ECA-UEFA Memorandum of Understanding can be viewed on www.ecaeurope.com.