Man City star Ilkay Gundogan has criticized the new Champions League reforms and believes no one is thinking about the players.
The reforms went under the radar along with the European Super League controversy and were passed on Monday.
Controversial escape plans dominated the news this week, all peaking on Tuesday night when the Premier League’s ‘big six’ sides pulled out.
The European Super League fell apart when the ‘Dirty Dozen’ takeover failed.
These clubs have been pushing for the reform of the first European competition and reforms in preparation for some time were approved on Monday.
The so-called ‘Swiss model’, which comes into effect in 2024, will see teams compete in a league of 36 teams – instead of the current group stage system where 32 teams are split into eight groups of four. – and will guarantee each club ten matches on a starting basis.
The new format, which guarantees clubs four more matches than in the current group stage, takes the Champions League from 125 to 225 matches and would create a huge headache for domestic programmers.
Gundogan is the first high profile star to denounce the reforms.
He tweeted: “With everything going on in the Super League… can we also talk about the new Champions League format? More and more games, nobody thinks of us players? The new UCL format is just the lesser of two evils compared to the Super League…
“The UCL format is currently working very well and that is why it is the most popular club competition in the world – for us, the players and for the fans.”
talkSPORT learned this week that UEFA may revisit proposals in the wake of the European Super League fiasco, as it was done to appease those bigger clubs.
European football expert Lars Sivertsen told talkSPORT: “The additional places which will be reserved for clubs with the highest coefficients which have not automatically qualified for the group stage of the Champions League, but which have qualified for the qualifying phase or the Europa League.
“Basically, if one of these big clubs has an offseason where they don’t qualify, they can still squeeze in if they’ve done well the last few seasons.
“It’s clearly tailor-made for a Juventus, for example, if they have an offseason like they do now, there’s a chance they’ll miss the top four.
“In that system they would still be allowed in straight in. It’s another big concession to the big clubs that UEFA made and you are now wondering that the big threat has been canceled and maybe they can come back back and reassess that now. “