The European Cup had accumulated enough prestige since its inception in the 195556 seasons but the big clubs in the main leagues were beginning to run out of business especially economically.
They considered it mandatory to grow to seek more income and that competition had a lot of room for improvement The Italians Milan and Juventus and Spanish Real Madrid and Barcelona began the maneuvers in the dark UEFA owner of the tournament felt harassed and without much conviction began to develop a small reform that would satisfy at least momentarily the most demanding.
Thus was born just 30 years ago what is now known as the Champions League although in its first edition 199192 it was still called the Champions Cup The competition par excellence of world football at club level and a reference and mirror of many other later experiences in other sports.
On tiptoe almost anonymous in a statement in September 1990 by the then UEFA general secretary Gerhard Aigner to the Swiss newspaper Sport for the first time it was hinted that the competition’s quarterfinals and semifinals could disappear and the Eight surviving teams from the sixteenth and eighth would form two groups of four The two champions would contest the final.
The reform was confirmed by the UEFA Executive Committee on April 18 1991 The objective was none other than to secure more matches In this first step two From the four in the quarters and semifinals to the six in the league Box office revenues and television contracts would increase.
Incidentally, to the big clubs took measures to minimize the risks of early elimination After a Real MadridMilan in the second round of 8990 UEFA was urged to create the figure of the seeds so that they could not meet before the quarterfinals.
The rule came into force in 9091 and the white team was eliminated against all odds by Spartak Moscow 13 at the Bernabéu in the quarterfinals.
When UEFA President Lennart Johansson announced the new formula for the European Cup it went almost unnoticed The media gave much more importance to another decision Liverpool’s return to continental competitions after six years of suspension after the Heysel tragedy.
The renewed format came into force in the 9192 seasons on an experimental basis and that is why the name of the Champions Cup was kept Key to settling the test was that the final of that 1992 edition was played by Johan Cruyff’s Barcelona and an Italian club Sampdoria The Catalans won with Koemans goal Two strongest league clubs that blessed the change.
The test was repeated in the following campaign already called the Champions League and in 9394 the loop was curled after the quarterfinal league two semifinals in a single game between the first two of each group at the home of the first.
In the 9798 seasons, the second classified of the leagues with the best UEFA ranking were accepted and the four groups went from four to six In 1999 the third and fourth of the top-ranked championships entered and the two-league model was established for four years In 2003 the second group stage was abolished the eighths returned and these fundamentals have been maintained until today with the exception that now the first four of the four best leagues Spain England Germany and Italy enter directly in the group stage.
As the clubs’ intentions to reach a European League even a closed one are kept alive with regular meetings of the most interested parties and UEFA is no stranger to this it is not surprising that the amount of prizes increases every year An example Real Madrid entered by winning the 2014 edition a total of 574 million Four years later it reached almost 90 and Bayern this year has passed 120 without accounting for marketing.