Closed Champions League foiled by revolt against elite clubs

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GENEVA (AP) — A revolt by European clubs has foiled plans by their wealthiest counterparts to turn the Champions League into a largely closed competition.
Juventus chairman Andrea Agnelli and his European Club Association leadership team has been forced to reset their expectations after failing to win support for a plan to steer the lucrative competition even more in favor of an elite group of elite teams.
Lower-ranking clubs made their voices heard in tense private meetings across Europe, suppressing a radical Champions League reinvention from 2024 that would have had profound implications for the intrigue of domestic competitions by largely severing qualification pathways but placating teams with more placed in a new third-tier competition.

Accounts of some of the small ECA-organized gatherings throughout August were provided to The Associated Press by people who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss confidential matters.
By the time Agnelli addressed the ECA assembly in Geneva on Monday, there were signs he had reluctantly listened to less storied members.
“We have different views on formats and the stability principles,” Agnelli said, according to a Twitter posting by the ECA which blocked media access to a meeting attended by more than 150 clubs. “There is an overall acceptance that reform must happen in 2024-25.”
Agnelli had hoped to use this speech to build momentum for a decisive meeting on formats on Wednesday at UEFA with clubs that has now been taken away from them. But the AP revealed last month that UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin called off the talks after sensing they were not “ready for a meaningful discussion.”
Now the ECA is rebooting a process

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