A Barcelona executive has approached UEFA to use future Champions League broadcast revenue as collateral to apply for a loan.
In an investigation into Barcelona’s finances, Athleticism learned that Barcelona needed loans to alleviate years of poor decision-making in the transfer market and overpayment of player wages, which has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic which has diminished commercial income and match days. It is understood that this preceded the presidency of Joan Laporta, who was officially elected in March 2021.
Barcelona’s idea was to request a loan from a bank and use future Champions League broadcast revenue to secure the loan. UEFA answered emphatically with a direct ‘no’.
UEFA explained to the Barcelona executive that they could not use several years of money for future Champions League television as there was no guarantee they would qualify for the tournament every season. This is because Champions League qualification is ensured by sporting merit, rather than reputation and legacy.
The Barcelona official is said to have been genuinely surprised by the rejection. Approached this week, UEFA said Athleticism they were unable to comment publicly due to “the confidentiality of the process”.
Barcelona have been in financial trouble for some time, with debts of £1billion and tight controls on recruitment and spending.
President Laporta recently admitted the club would activate a third ‘economic lever’ by selling a percentage of his production house Barca Studios for €100m (£83.7m, $101.6m).
At the start of the summer, they sold 10% of their television rights for the next 25 years to Sixth Street, for a total capital gain of 267 million euros (£228m, $272m). .
Last month, they activated their second lever by selling a further 15% to the same company, resulting in Sixth Street acquiring a total of 25% of the club’s TV rights deals through 2047.
So far this summer, Barcelona have made five signings with the arrivals of Franck Kessie, Andreas Christensen, Robert Lewandowski, Raphinha and Jules Kounde.
The La Liga side begin their 2022-23 campaign at home to Rayo Vallecano on August 13.
Barcelona declined to comment on the matter.
(Photo: Getty Images)
At a time of glaring inequality, football needs more superclubs to be as incompetent as Barca