Latam football looks to reinvent itself post-pandemic

Madrid, Sep 25 (efe-epa).- Attention to youth farm clubs, creativity to solve the economic situation and the need for control tools or financial ‘fair play’ are some of the keys that Latin American football faces, football executives from Colombia, Mexico and Chile told the virtual forum ‘Soccerex Connected’ on Friday.

“The pandemic has made us reinvent ourselves and the national teams have organized virtual rallies with the youth teams, which allows coaches not to lose contact with the player,” said the general secretary of the Mexican Football Federation, Íñigo Riestra, who acknowledged that the pandemic has caused a 50% reduction in the federation’s income.

Juan Fernando Mejía, a member of the Colombian Football Federation, pointed out that crises “bring opportunities” and one of them is “to reinvent the salary system and the income structure” after six months without matches, sponsorships and reduced television income.

“With the pandemic we have the opportunity to register more players, even 50 according to Conmebol, which opens the field for youth players to become professionals in a shorter period of time. For Colombia, which is an exporting country, it is undoubtedly an opportunity,” he said.

From the perspective of a club, the president of the Chilean Catholic University, Juan Tagle, agreed that it is “fundamental” to better remunerate teams that are talent trainers.

“Many players come to Europe and there are mechanisms to improve the defense of the rights of the training clubs. There are solidarity mechanisms of 5%, but they have deficiencies (…) At FIFA or Conmebol level we have to stand firm in defending that heritage of South American football, which is the training of players,”he argued.

The Chilean executive emphasized the need for South American football to advance in assuming financial fair play mechanisms.

“We are behind, there are countries where debts with players accumulate, there is price inflation and many clubs do not comply,” Tagle said. EFE-EPA


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