United Call For Champions League Revamp
3/22/2005 8:52:00 PM
Manchester United chief David Gill has called for the Champions League to be revamped to protect the biggest clubs in the competition.
The Premiership giants were knocked out of this seasons competition by AC Milan, which Gill believes would have been avoided if the draw was seeded.
Hel said: "At the moment we effectively have a random draw after the group stage.
"Maybe we should use a system where the holders are rated number one and they play the 16th ranked team, number two versus 15, and so on."
He added: "Itís not good for the big clubs, not good for TV and sponsors if there are no Spanish clubs in the quarter-finals.
"When the draw for the group stage is made, each clubís co-efficient is used.
"Given it is unlikely we will ever go back to a situation of having two group stages, maybe we should use a system during the knock-out phase that also reflects the rankings.
"AC Milan were discussing this before we played them, so it is not a knee-jerk reaction."
Real Madrid, Barcelona, Arsenal and holders Porto were all knocked out in the second round.
What do you think? I personally agree with David Gill since I think it is such a shame that matches like Barcelona - Chelsea & Milan - Man Utd had to happen in the 1/8 finals. As much as I'd like for the big teams to be knocked out as fast as possible so as to increase Inter's chance of winning it, there could also be a situation in the future when we have to draw the Barcas or Real Madrids in such an early stage.
As a neutral, I find it such a shame that the Barca - Chelsea & Milan - Man Utd clashes happened so early. What made it worse was the fact that key players such as Shevchenko, Ruud and Robben had to miss the tie; although actually injuries can happen in the later part of the season too. Another factor is that we have to witness a PSV - Lyon tie in the 1/4 final stage, instead of Real Madrid's or Barcelona's matches. With all due respect, PSV & Lyon combined can not match the prestige or flair that Barca or Real Madrid have.
Hmmm, I just remembered that actually there is a rule whereby the 1st placed teams in the group stage cannot be drawn against each other. So actually, the clubs were protected. Oh, I'm so confused. :p