Rosell, at the ECA assembly. / PHOTO: FCB.

FC Barcelona President Sandro Rosell and Executive Committee Vice-President of the European Club Association (ECA), attended the ECA General Assembly held in Warsaw, Poland. The ECA’s Executive Committee presented a series of proposals to the UEFA Congress that will be up for ratification at the end of March in Istanbul, Turkey. The proposals focus on club economies and governance, as well as the international game schedule.

On the financial side, the most salient point is the proposal to compensate clubs for lending their players out to national sides ahead of the European Championships in 2012 and 2016. The proposal calls for a significant improvement to the 55 million euro limit agreed upon in 2008 ahead of this this year’s Euro, and it establishes a record limit for the Poland-Ukraine Euro in 2016.

Insurance to cover the risk of injury

Another significant proposal is to establish obligatory financial coverage, which UEFA would be responsible for, in the event of injury to players that play in European clubs during matches with their national sides, friendlies or official. This coverage will go into effect in the next European Championship.

The international game schedule has also been affected: the number of international UEFA games have been reduced, specifically in the month of August.

The clubs are given a voice

Significant improvements have been made in terms of governance and club representation within the UEFA organization. In fact, no decision will be made without the club’s prior agreement. In short, the clubs will have a much stronger voice through the Clubs Competition Committee, of which the FC Barcelona President is one of the most active members.

The Clubs Competition Committee also put forth a series of modifications, ratified by the Assembly, that will affect aspects of the competition. Some of these modifications, for example, is to set the maximum height of the pitch to three centimeters and the suspension of players that receive three yellow cards during the Champions League qualifying rounds. These changes must be ratified by UEFA’s Executive Committee.

The General Assembly also made headway in the regulation of financial Fair Play sponsored by UEFA, its goal is to protect the economic solvency of football clubs. The project has already entered its implementation stage.

The last relevant point of the meeting affects general European matters and social dialogue, specifically the Fisas report that refers to the specificity of sport within the European Union. To discuss this broad issue, the Assembly invited representatives from handball and basketball clubs to join the discussion.

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