Top European clubs already hit hard by coronavirus have been dealt another blow after it was revealed they would have to foot a huge TV rebate.

European Club Association chairman Andrea Agnelli confirmed on Tuesday that the sides who competed in last season’s Champions League and Europa League along with UEFA would have to foot the £518million bill to TV companies.

Agnelli also said talks over changes to the format and structure of Europe’s two premier competitions, which last season saw one-legged ties introduced from the quarter-finals, would ‘need to stall’ while clubs tried to recover following the financial damage caused by Covid-19.

Andrea Agnelli confirmed European clubs and UEFA would foot staggering £518m TV rebate

Andrea Agnelli confirmed European clubs and UEFA would foot staggering £518m TV rebate

Andrea Agnelli confirmed European clubs and UEFA would foot staggering £518m TV rebate

Clubs have suffered heavily over the last six months after being forced to play matches behind closed doors.

Premier League sides who featured in the Champions League and Europa League have been relatively well insulated in comparison with their European counterparts thanks to the staggering sums they get from TV revenue.

But across the continent others have had to significantly cut wage bills and sell players for less than their value to stay afloat.

Bayern Munich won the Champions League behind closed doors last month against PSG

Bayern Munich won the Champions League behind closed doors last month against PSG

Bayern Munich won the Champions League behind closed doors last month against PSG

Of the most high-profile are 2018 Champions League winners Real Madrid who sold James Rodriguez for a cut-price £20m to Everton as they try to balance the books.

Agnelli, who is also chairman of Juventus, said the outlook for many clubs in Europe remained bleak.

He said: ‘We are looking at top revenue decrease of approximately €4billion in the next two years and according to FIFA, 90 per cent of those top-line losses will be borne by clubs.

Real Madrid sold James Rodriguez to Everton for £20million to help balance the books

Real Madrid sold James Rodriguez to Everton for £20million to help balance the books

Real Madrid sold James Rodriguez to Everton for £20million to help balance the books

‘We have seen very important rebates to the principal broadcasters both at domestic level and at international level.

‘We have seen a £330million rebate in the Premier League, we have seen a downturn in the Bundesliga domestic rights of about €200million, we are in the process of finalising the account with UEFA with a reduction of around €575million (£518m) for the international club competitions, and that is all money that is normally distributed.’

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