"We can see the disappearance of clubs of football"

Cristian González

2 October, 2013

We interview economist Josep Maria Gay de Líebana who makes us five cents of the situation in the sports sector.

How do you see the panorama of the sports sector of Catalonia?
From the sport point of view it is a very strong sector, with a production of training and generation of very good athletes. Now, from the economic point of view, it is through difficulties and you need to take a series of measures to revive it.
What should minority sports do to survive financially?
They are clubs They depend essentially on private income, that is, on the shareholders' fees and until recently they had some public subsidy, but now this has been over due to the situation. Now is a time to innovate the generation of income. On the one hand, adjusting the fees to attract new subscribers and, on the other, properly exploiting the resources that the club has, such as the restaurant, organizing colonies, houses or other activities that generate additional income.
Let's talk about football. You say that the model is in crisis.
The situation is very complicated, except for Barça and Real Madrid. The rest of the clubs They have a significant debt and, even worse, they have it with different creditors. Not to mention the debt they have also contracted with the Treasury. All this is worse because these clubs They move with a modest economy and this prevents them from leaving this situation. They are forced to take on a restructuring to try to reduce the high costs they face. They must be resized to what they can generate and this implies reduction of jobs and reduction of salaries.
Talk about better distributing television rights ...
The Spanish League has two main players, who are Barça and Real Madrid. The difference between these two teams is not only due to the distribution of television rights but above all because both Barça and Real Madrid have managed to become two clubs of soccer that go beyond the Spanish borders. They are sports entities with a worldwide interest with followers in many countries, from Asia to America, going through Africa and northern Europe. They are transnational entities. The rest of the Spanish teams are not and are far behind at the generation of resources. Barça generate 483 million euros and Valencia, which is the third most important club, generates only 121. Here is the difference. This does not mean that the subject of television rights is not rethinking. At the moment, Barça and Real Madrid share half of the cake among them, but we must not forget that they are the ones that most spectators capture. The solution to the problem would be to make the Spanish League move more audiences than the one that moves now and that means that more audiences are followed by other countries. Another aspect that should be improved would be to change the method of payment. And, finally, once the profit pie has increased, it would be necessary to make a more equitable distribution of profits among all clubs of the League. It is not possible that Wigan Athtletic, currently in the second English division, enters 49 million euros in television rights and that Valencia, on the other hand, sends 42.
Do teams that can not reduce their deficit should disappear or lose the category?
Obviously a new framework must be created that regulates all these situations. In fact, a new law is being pending that regulates the insolvency of the clubs of football. I think that some way that can be hard will be tackled and that can end up involving the loss of category. We have cases like Tenerife or Oviedo that are pulling but they are in very complicated situations. In the coming years we can see the disappearance of some clubs of football. In the future the Spanish Football League will be cut and not because it is made for a sports decision but for a reason of economic limitation. Not everyone can afford or afford to be in the first division. Soccer will be debugged.
And what does Barça have to do to confront the future with guarantees and if it can overtake Real Madrid?
Barça is in a good position. He is the second in generation of income at a very discreet distance from Real Madrid. His objective is none other than to continue to win titles on an international scale. In recent years, the Champions has won several times and that is what places you and makes you increase your income. Many years ago that comes at least to the semifinals, and that's good. In the long run, if the Blaugrana continue with this rhythm of titles, this will make Real Madrid lose distance and notice the economic downturn because their sponsorship contracts, which are going well, will not be as good.
In summary, the Spanish league has two great ones clubs of soccer that have managed to sell very well in the world.

the author

Cristian González

Graduate in Journalism (UPF), Graduate in Contemporary History (UB), Master in Business Communication Specialization in Digital Technologies (UPF).

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