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SBD Global/November 30, 2012/International Football

German Football Officials Disagree With Platini's Idea For Europa, Champions League

The majority of Germany's top football clubs "disagree with UEFA President Michel Platini's plans to reform Europe's top two club competitions," according to the DPA. Platini "proposed to scrap the Europa League in '15 and at the same time increase the number of participating clubs in the Champions League to 64."
  • Hannover 96 Sport Dir Jörg Schmadtke: "It is pretty dull and a waste. We are very happy with the Europa League."
  • Borussia Dortmund coach Jürgen Klopp: "I don't think anything of it. I don't have the impression that the Champions League or the Europa League need a reformation. It is just as stupid as combining the 1st and 2nd Bundesliga."
  • Borussia Mönchengladbach coach Lucien Favre: "It is dangerous if always the same teams compete in the Champions League. This would make the rich even richer and the gap between the clubs would widen."  
  • VfB Stuttgart Sport Dir Fredi Bobic: "Should you still call it Champions League then? If you integrate the Europa League into the Champions League then it is more like a Europa League."
  • Schalke Manager Horst Heldt: "Fundamentally, the Champions League is supposed to stay the top club competition."
  • Bayer Leverkusen Sport Dir Rudi Völler: "You shouldn't immediately condemn the idea and listen to it for now. The importance for the Bundesliga is how many teams will participate in the Champions League."
  • Bayern Munich President Karl-Heinz Rummenigge: "We are no friends of the idea to replace quality with quantity. We are against scrapping the Europa League and especially against increasing the number of teams in the Champions League."
Rummenigge, however, was in favor of a proposal by the European Club Association "that would allow the Europa League champion to participate in the following Champions League season." Favre called it, "A good idea." And Bobic also welcomed the idea, "You can do that" (DPA, 11/29).
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International Football, Europe

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