Former Barcelona defender Gerard Pique has raised the alarm that Real Madrid and Barcelona will not be able to compete in Europe in five years.
Speaking at a business event in Spain, Pique said that Barcelona and Real Madrid were on a path towards not being able to keep up financially with other European clubs, notably those in the Premier League.
“Each league is regulated differently. LaLiga has very strict financial fair play rules, and other leagues have another system. In European matches, you have to compete against those teams,” he said.
“We are going to end up with Barcelona and Madrid not being able to compete.”
He suggested that Madrid and Barcelona may have to give up their fan-ownership status “unless there is a Super League or European financial fair play”.
The Spanish giants are the last two clubs who continue to support the European Super League project, despite the backing down of 10 other teams in England, Italy and Spain.
The European Court of Justice is set to rule on the competition’s validity in late December.
Pique, who is now retired, also blamed the Spanish clubs’ mounting debts on the league’s switch to a more equitable broadcasting distribution model.
He argues that Real Madrid and Barcelona deserve much larger shares of broadcasting rights as they attract a “hundred thousand times more fans” than smaller clubs.
“That injustice does not seem right to me,” he told the Expansión and BRAND Business Sport Forum.