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Serie A wants a "divorce" from Serie B


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Serie A Clubs Seek To Breakaway

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Continued disputes over television rights fees have led Italy’s Serie A TIM (sponsor) clubs to push for a clean break from Serie B. Cagliari supremo Massimo Cellino, who serves as the vice-president of the Serie A clubs at the Lega Calcio, says there needs to be an official divorce between the two divisions that make up the Italian Football League as the current arrangement is unworkable.

Cellino told Gazzetta dello Sport: “They (Serie B) can start again a new life on their own. We are on the verge of new federal statutes and elections in the Lega Calcio, the Federation and the CONI (Italian Olympic Committee). The league is 20 years behind and we cannot lose any more time otherwise we will be taken over by the rest of the world. Serie A needs a new beginning and I say this even though my club is bottom in the standings (in Serie A) after six games played. But this change is needed.”

The Serie A clubs believe they have the potential to secure more lucrative television deals on their own. The English Barclays (sponsor) Premier League has become one of the most lucrative domestic competitions in the world since parting company with the Football League in 1992. “We cannot have an assembly with 42 people in which on one side you are discussing the Champions League and on the other side problems that are light years away,” said Cellino.

The two divisions will meet this week to try and find a deal for television rights, but Serie B is set to turn down an offer of Eur51 million for television rights from their Serie A counterparts. “The B should receive 51 million euros but we could go even up to 67 or 68,” added Cellino. “But enough with being forced to live together.”

Source: PA Sport

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