Excite

Fifa should be more 'collegiate', sayd Premier League chief

Chief executive of the Premier League, Richard Scudamore, has said that it's time Fifa, Uefa and Europe's big clubs get round the table and hammer out their differences, lest Karl-Heinz Rummenigge's calls for a 'revolution' in how the game is organised come to fruition.

That there are tensions between the clubs and the game's governing bodies is nothing new: last week it was pointedly leaked that the European Club Association, of which Rummenigge is president (as well as being chief executive of Bayern Munich) would seek to break away from both Uefa and Fifa if concerns about the international calendar and finances weren't addressed. Now Scudamore – a man not exactly well known for his love of negotiation, as the FA and Football League know – has said that it's time that there was a proper dialogue between the clubs and those who run the game, so that no revolution has to take place.

'I don't think Rummenigge's language was helpful and don't believe in issuing threats, but if you strip away the emotiveness of it I have to agree with him,' he said. 'Fifa need to be a bit more collegiate in terms of the various stakeholders in football and should listen to them. At the end of the day we're all chasing the same thing, and benefiting from the same thing.

'People's first engagement is usually through a World Cup. But what we do at the Premier League is also driving interest across the world that benefits Fifa. We create superstars so the World Cup is full of people everyone has heard of. How many real stars have been born at the last couple of World Cups? Everyone knew them already. International football has been good for club football and vice versa.

'But the tension has now got so great that we have to do something about it. In 2007 Fifa set up a strategic committee made up of associations, federations, leagues, clubs and players' representations, which was very positive. Mysteriously, it's not met since 2008, but that's the sort of thing they should do. They should get everyone around the table together to sort it out. I don't want this constant drip, drip, drip of tension.'

United Kingdom - Excite Network Copyright ©1995 - 2017