Miguel Ángel Gil Marín analysed the details of the agreement between LaLiga and CVC in an interview with Agencia EFE. The Atlético de Madrid CEO offered his opinion on the matter.
“Much is said about this issue from a position of ignorance, without any rigour whatsoever. People talk based on who they feel more identified or associated with rather than on the consequences of the operation. I think it is a good thing that the clubs are seeking to become stronger, more solvent, more competitive through a stronger league. And therefore, I think it is good that LaLiga hires the best professionals in each area of expertise, and partners with those who can help us grow.
Being within a strong league allows us to be more competitive, more solvent, to have more value as brands, and this allows us to be able to offer better facilities and better services and products to our fans.”
According to Miguel Ángel Gil, "CVC offers two things fundamentally. On the one hand, money for clubs to improve their facilities so that they can offer more and better services to their fans, as well as tools for the digital development of the clubs. The synergy between LaLiga and CVC will boost a fundamental aspect for the future of our sector: DATA.
A sector like ours – sport and entertainment – needs to know its fans. It is not enough to know how many fans we have; we need to know who they are, in order to be able to personalise our offers, which means optimising the clubs' revenue and fan satisfaction.
Segmenting our supporters well will allow us to be more effective and make our fans happier.
On the other hand, it brings experience in the exploitation of the rights of competitions, such as Formula 1 and other sports leagues, as well as the desire and enthusiasm to show the world in general and the clubs in particular, its ability to optimise the value of LaLiga's rights, and with it the value of the clubs."
Our CEO also explained to Agencia EFE what it means for Atlético de Madrid specifically.
"Today, the audiovisual rights managed by LaLiga represent 30% of Atlético de Madrid's ordinary income, excluding the players' market. That is to say, the loss that Atlético de Madrid would have in the future, if the income were as it is today, would be 3%. I sincerely believe that Atlético de Madrid would recover that 3% in two ways; the first, via LaLiga, as a consequence of the increase in the value of the rights thanks to the synergy with CVC. Secondly, through the profitability of the investment that Atlético de Madrid would make with that money in a new infrastructure, which would allow the club to offer its fans a true city of sport and entertainment."
Miguel Ángel Gil Marín was also asked about how he believes the clubs' revenues will evolve in the future. Our CEO believes that "the huge growth we have had over the last decade in television rights is going to slow down. We will grow, albeit more moderately, thanks to new experiences for pay-TV subscribers, which will be possible thanks to technology. Technology will make it possible to enjoy the show in a different way, almost as if each spectator were the direct protagonist of the match.
I believe that the greatest growth will come from alternative sources to the television rights managed by LaLiga: UEFA post-24 competitions, fan experiences both in person on match days and online 365 days a year, and finally from commercial agreements linked to companies that offer online products, both in traditional markets and blockchain.
Therefore, I believe that the percentage of loss that the clubs that adhere to the LaLiga-CVC project will have will represent a smaller amount each year with respect to each club’s total annual income."
When asked if there are sides in the football sector, Miguel Ángel Gil was very clear.
"Of course there are, and I believe that few can appreciate the damage that is being done to the sector in general, and to the clubs in particular. Clubs are directly dependent on those bodies that manage part of our rights. And this is what generates the main problem in the sector.
For example, Atlético de Madrid is clearly dependent on LaLiga and UEFA, as these two institutions manage almost 65% of its ordinary income.
Why does the Royal Spanish Football Federation argue with LaLiga? Because of the competences over our rights and the money those rights represent.
Why is UEFA arguing with FIFA? Because of competition in the organisation of Competitions in which our players participate. The difference is that UEFA shares a very high percentage of the revenue with the clubs that train, invest and provide the players, and FIFA only allocates a very small part of its revenue to the clubs.
The constant quest for more matches to generate more revenue by FIFA and the Spanish Federation is having a detrimental effect on the clubs and their players.
The Federation needs, within its competences, to optimise as much as possible the competitions it organises, both at national and club level – Copa del Rey and Spanish Super Cup – in order to increase its revenues.
FIFA does the same with the Competitions it organises, both at national and club level, proof of which is the current intention to organise a Club World Cup with a greater number of clubs every two years. This permanent search for more matches in order to have more income and in turn have more power leads to the scenario that players play more than 50 matches per season, in some cases more than 60, and that clubs feel unprotected by having the obligation to accept that our players, whom we train and pay, go to play matches for third parties, for which we hardly receive any financial compensation, and cause fatigue and injuries."