Real Madrid are holding their their annual General Assembly for Socios today (still ongoing), and several matters will be addressed, including the appointment of Jose Pirri as Honorary President, as well as taking into motion the proposal to rename Real Madrid City to “Ciudad Real Madrid Florentino Pérez” at the request of more than 1,000 representative members. There is also a proposal for an agreement to extend the authorization to the club’s Board of Directors to go into debt in order to finance works on the remodeling of the Santiago Bernabéu stadium.
Meanwhile, Florentino Perez just finished giving his annual speech at the General Assembly, and in his words, there is scathing criticism of UEFA, La Liga, and Barcelona, to which was met with thunderous applause from the members in attendance.
On the need for a European Super League
“Football is suffering an unprecedented institutional crisis. The situation is very serious. Either we react now or football will not survive. The main problem is that there are people in charge who act without thinking about the fans. European football does not belong to the president of UEFA nor the Spanish one or that of LaLiga. The Super League is more necessary than ever. The objective is to offer the best football and it is the clubs that have to control their destiny. There are more and more clubs that lose millions every year no matter how much money their owners have. And I demand more rules for Financial Fair Play, which some clubs fail to comply with without any consequences. This situation is not stable, it cannot be.
“The new UEFA format is an unusual and absurd project. This model will further alienate fans of our sport and especially the youngest ones.
“We have the obligation to offer the fans the best possible show. We also want to make access to televised football cheaper. It makes no sense to have to pay 10% of you minimum wage to have access to watching football. The Super League was conceived to solve all these problems. I continue to trust in the justice of the European Union because UEFA does not have the right to a monopoly on football in the Europe of freedoms.
The state of refereeing in Spain
“In Spain the situation is more worrying with matters as delicate as refereeing. Nobody knows very well who draws the VAR lines, why we do not see the complete image of offside. I trust that the Government will act to regenerate the structures on arbitration system. The credibility of our competitions is very deteriorated.”
La Liga’s lack of transparency and abuse of power
“LaLiga’s performances deserve our concern. They are of such severity... that they seek to attack the club’s personal assets. We are 100,000 members and we suffer. They have tried everything. First, expropriate 11% of our audiovisual rights in 50 years and then, change the Sports Law to disqualify presidents... and it doesn’t take much imagination to know who they wanted to appoint. The National Court has already declared these sanctions illegal.
“The President of LaLiga abused his authority and separated us, demonstrating that not all clubs receive the same treatment. In short, we managed to get the president of CVC to back down in that Assembly and he did so publicly. They wanted to expropriate the personal assets of Madrid to LaLiga.
”Does it seem normal to anyone that we are not part of the LaLiga Delegate Commission? That they don’t let us see what each club is paid for other things? We have demanded it and we are denied. LaLiga should not hide...All clubs should have equal treatment and be able to verify that everything LaLiga does is done in compliance with the agreements. We are concerned about the lack of transparency, what we know is that more is spent. Starting with the president’s own salary.
“The audiovisual rights belong to the clubs and are transferred to LaLiga for marketing on what happens only in the stadium from 2 minutes before the match. The clubs can exploit the remaining content, the pre-match, post-match, what happens in the locker room. LaLiga wants to expropriate everything from us and also appropriate the remaining content. We are forced to go to court on a recurring basis to defend our assets.
“We cannot live like this. What is clear is that LaLiga is trying to expropriate us without our consent. They really think that if they take it away from us it will not affect them personally because they think that the members of Madrid only defend values and European Cups, but that is not the case. We have a heritage that we have built since 1902 and we have the courage to defend.”
Barcelona accusing Real Madrid of ‘Sociological Madridismo’
“The correct thing would be to say ‘universal sociological Madridismo’. That universal Madridismo exists. A legion of fans spread throughout the world. What’s more, there is universal sociological Madridismo that was the only founding club of FIFA and the only club that promoted the creation of the European Cup in 1955. It has also been recognized as the best club of the 20th century and we are positioned to repeat it in the 21st. Millions of fans identify with our values and they represent Santiago Bernabéu, who was ahead of his time. There is the sociological Madridismo thanks to legends who won the first five consecutive European Cups.”
“It is not normal that a football club has paid 8 million over 20 years to the Vice President of the Committee. We were admitted to the case as an injured party. It is a case of enormous seriousness and it is damaging the image of football Spanish. It is not appropriate to try to justify something so serious by trying to attack those harmed (with ‘sociological Madridismo’.”
The new Bernabeu
“This year’s investment in the Bernabéu is 355 million euros and the accumulated investment is 853 million. We are living one of the dreams of Real Madrid fans. It will be the pride of Real Madrid fans and a tourist attraction for the city.
“It will be an avant-garde reference and one of the most important leisure centers on the continent. It is one of the most complex works being carried out in Europe. The stadium is open and operational 365 days a year. The roof is unique in the world and It can be opened and closed in 15 minutes. The automated grass system is a milestone that is generating admiration around the world. The perimeter gallery that goes under the entire stand to distribute the goods we hope will be operational before the end of the year And with the new two-story store, we will double the exhibition and sales.”