European Super League Poses No Threat To Brighton Chief Paul Barber
The threat of a European ‘super league’ has loomed over the continent for years and has amplified in recent months following comments from Juventus chairman Andrea Agnelli.
Published Mar 30, 2020 | UFCB.ac.uk
Agnelli has made his intentions clear – he wants to scrap domestic football as we know it and create in its place a league featuring Europe’s biggest, and most importantly, richest clubs.
While in the short-term it looks as though the Champions League will be expanded to appease the likes of Agnelli, one prominent Premier League boss doesn’t seem too worried by the prospect of a breakaway super league.
In an interview with UCFB, Paul Barber, chief executive and deputy chairman of Brighton & Hove Albion, suggested that as long as spectators are happy with what they’re watching on a regular basis – as seems to be the case – then fans of the Premier League shouldn’t need to worry.
He said: “At the moment there doesn’t seem to be an appetite from fans for that [a super league]. Football supporters across Europe like their own domestic league and they like the competition they’re in. They like to travel to games week in, week out, and the concept of a European Super League would change all of that.”
Behind the scenes, Barber has helped lead Brighton to the Premier League, following a memorable decade for the club which has included two promotions, the opening of a state-of-the-art training centre and the historic move to their Amex Stadium after years in the wilderness at the Withdean.
So after all of that, there’s not a chance Barber is going to sit back and watch the Premier League product be damaged via a super league.
He said: “The global profile that comes with playing in the Premier League is invaluable to our club, but also for our commercial partners American Express and Nike. It’s also great for the city because it helps the economy.”
Barber finished: “So yes, of course it’s a concern, but I think there’s enough of an appetite from fans in Europe to maintain the league system as it currently is.”