But, despite the clubs agreeing to the new 36 team format, it would be naive to think they are all happy – and this is highly unlikely to stop further problems down the road.
The biggest clubs in Spain, Italy and Germany are concerned about the Premier League having too much wealth and power which will make it increasingly difficult to compete. Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus are still committed to their legal case in the European Court of Justice as they have not given up on the Super League and they are unhappy at UEFA having too much power.
That is likely to be the next development in this saga with the ECJ to rule in the next few months on the question of whether UEFA’s control of European football constitutes a monopoly which is in breach of competition law. UEFA will bring in the new-look Champions League from 2024.
This comes after agreeing to reduce the number of Group games from ten to eight and they have also ditched their coefficient plan in favour of two extra places to the nations whose teams performed best in Europe that year. However, that is still also causing disquiet because it effectively rewards collective success rather than individual achievements and the Premier League has the most power, the most wealth and a growing stranglehold on European football. If anyone thinks this new Champions League solution is the end of the story, then they are very much mistaken.
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Heading in the right direction
The Premier League has confirmed an extended study with players using PROTECHT mouthguards, supplied by UK sports technology company Sports & Wellbeing Analytics. Using microchips within the mouthguard, technology can collect data about the impact of heading a ball and could be crucial with clubs from the Premier League, EFL and WSL taking part as they look for more evidence of a link between heading and brain injuries.
Chris Turner, chief executive of SWA, said: “Clubs are very supportive and enthusiastic to take part in the research, especially at academy level to look after the stars of the future. “There’s a lot you can do with the data, looking at managing the workload, training and heading. In rugby, Danny Care has said using the mouthguard and its data has helped him extend his career by a couple of years by managing his training and less contact. It’s basically a GPS for contact in sport.”
Meanwhile, Arsenal put their women’s boss Jonas Eidevall front and centre with Mikel Arteta when they signed new deals. It was a very deliberate and admirable move to show the commitment to the women’s team as the club is investing heavily in the whole set-up, they are determined to improve and expand to underline their ambitions in the WSL.