‘UEFA actually opposes Ajax’s European ambition’


Ajax aims to join the European top, but is hindered in this by UEFA, according to journalist Tom Knipping. Football International. The way of income distribution in the Champions League means that the team from Amsterdam will improve financially, but the European top cycle will earn even more money. As a result, the gap between those parties continues to widen.

All this is due to the so-called distribution key that UEFA has been using since 2018. Prizes from the past and the position on the ten-year coefficient ranking determine thirty percent how much a club earns from a European campaign. Given Ajax’s successful European past with four billions of balls won, the club does benefit from the new system, for example, on the basis of its past alone, Ajax will receive fifteen million euros more than Champions League opponent Atalanta, but top clubs from the traditional top competitions earn proportionally more. money than the Amsterdammers. This widens the financial gap between the clubs.

As a comparison material, Knipping cites the difference in prize money between Ajax and FC Barcelona during the 2018/19 season. Both clubs were then stranded in the semi-finals of the Champions League. ‘The 78 million euros that Ajax collected in the successful 2018/19 season was of course astronomical, but you can also say that Ajax came off poorly. As a semi-finalist, Ajax only finished twelfth on the premium ranking that season. ‘ Atlético Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain, among others, earned more money than the Amsterdammers. “FC Barcelona received forty million euros more for exactly the same performance.”

This makes it more difficult for Ajax to join the European top, while that is the ambition. UEFA actually opposes that. Before the start of the current three-year cycle, it was already clear that in the best case scenario (three times in a row) Ajax would receive 45 million less than Real Madrid on the basis of the coefficient premiums alone, ‘Knipping explains. His conclusion is therefore clear: “If Ajax manages to repeat the piece of art from 2019, it will be thanks to UEFA, certainly not thanks.”

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