UEFA president explains plan for USA Champions League final and expects backlash

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin has doubled down on his plan to move the Champions League final to the United States – saying it's justified by viewership figures.

The Slovenian lawyer and football administrator has explained that the showpiece fixture between the best clubs in Europe could be played off continent as soon as 2026.

Despite understanding that supporters will lash out at the idea, Ceferin thinks that the numbers involved would make it more viable than many might assume.

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Speaking on the Men in Blazers podcast, Ceferin said: "It is possible (the Champions League final being held in the US).

"We started to discuss about that, but then one year it is the World Cup, 2024 is Euro, this year is Istanbul, '24 in London, '25 in Munich.

"And after that let's see. It's possible, it's possible."

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He continued: "Football is extremely popular in United States these days. Americans are willing to pay this amount (gestures a high amount) for the best and nothing for the less. So they will follow European football as basketball lovers in Europe follow NBA."

He concluded: "Fans will still think in a way, these b****ds in Switzerland, it's all about money, and I repeat thousand times, we redistribute 97% of the money. Of course our revenues are huge. I would love them to be much, much bigger than now.

"What shocked me actually is that our Euro (2020) finals, Europe national team finals, was watched by more people in United States than NBA Finals.

"What shocked me is that 30 matches of the Euros, every match viewership was a Super Bowl viewership. So I think we are doing well."

With Ceferin re-elected for a four-year term until 2027 back in April, he might well have a two-year period in which he can make his dream a reality.

As he mentioned, the the 2023 Champions League final will be held in Istanbul, with 2024 in Wembley and 2025 in Munich.


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