Now according to a report in the German magazine Kicker, UEFA is getting set to roll out a new revenue distribution that could see the top clubs earning over €100m per season.
Based on the increased revenue, the 2016 winners Real Madrid would have earned €135.5m for winning the Champions League versus the €94m they actually earned. Even for a club the size of Real Madrid, that is a sizeable jump.
And its not just the biggest teams that will benefit. Under this new proposal, smaller clubs such as Maccabi Tel Aviv or FC Astana, who both were eliminated during the group stages, would have earned closed to €20m. While this is a small amount compared to what the big clubs would earn, but it is still a sizeable jump over the €12.965m that BATE Borisov earned in 2015 from their group stage matches.
The European Clubs Association (ECA) chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge is happy with the new rules and said on Tuesday that the changes, which will apply to European competitions from 2018 to 2021, represented “a good compromise.”
“I believe there are no winners and no losers. The new concept is not a revolution, it’s just an evolution, and I’m convinced that everyone will benefit,” he said.
Rummenigge pointed out that Real Madrid, who won the Champions League last season, got less money from the television market pool than Manchester City, who they eliminated in the semi-finals.
“That was not fair and it has been corrected,” he said.
While the focus will be on how Uefa is favoring the big teams here, overlooked is the trickle-down effect that the increased payouts will have on the smaller leagues. If Bate, Celtic or Astana reach the Champions League group stages, the €20m minimum payment is a huge percentage of their revenue and will allow them to buy players that their domestic rivals cannot compete for. So is the unintended consequences of this ruling by UEFA to eventually weaken the domestic leagues around Europe?