It may not be long until Liverpool are playing Champions League matches outside Europe, with a report on Monday claiming executives behind some of the competition’s top clubs are in favour of the move.
The Reds have a long and illustrious history in the European cup, having been crowned champions on six separate occasions, and reaching the final of last year’s competition.
Last year, there was an attempt to change the landscape of football on the continent with the introduction of a European Super League, a concept that ultimately fell through due to widespread protests.
Unsurprisingly, that has not stopped those above from making further attempts to revolutionise the Champions League.
Their latest plan? Take European football out of Europe.
That’s according to the Athletic, who say it’s a topic that will be under discussion in the latest meeting of UEFA’s executive committee, before the general assembly of the European Club Association (ECA) in Istanbul this week.
The report claims “some of the most powerful club executives in European football” are behind the move, in order to “make meaningful games more accessible to the clubs’ global fanbases.”
It’s reported that matches could take place in major markets such as the US, China or the Middle East, with PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi among those in support.
For now, it only remains an idea, with the proposed changes likely to face more opposition from supporters.
It’s also reported that matches taken outside of Europe would initially be group games, rather than fixtures in the latter stages of the competition.
UEFA are already said to be mulling over an ‘Opening Tournament’ concept that would see four teams – the previous season’s Champions League winners and three other leading teams – go head-to-head at the beginning of each season.
What would all of this mean for Liverpool? More travel and potentially more games. For that reason, you’d be surprised if Jurgen Klopp is in favour of any of these proposals.
You only have to look at his reaction to Todd Boehly’s idea of a Premier League ‘All-Star Game’ to see how the Liverpool boss feels about cramming even more games into the football calendar.
Making games more accessible to supporters outside of Europe is understandable, but is relocating Champions League matches really the way to do it?