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By ESPN Staff

Big spenders 'threaten football economy'

A member of UEFA's Financial Fair Play watchdog has told Le Parisien that nouveaux riche clubs "endanger the whole economy of professional football."

Lawyer Yves Wehrli warned that the approach of spending huge sums in an attempt to buy quick success created "systemic risks".

Wehrli, one of a seven-man UEFA panel on FFP, said: "Models of economic development, step by step, are still possible. There are cases of notable success -- the case of Borussia Dortmund, for example.

"Other clubs, by contrast, opt for ultra-quick models of growth. In those cases, the shareholders have to cover significant financial losses.

"By acting like that, these nouveaux riches endanger the whole economy of professional football. They create systemic risk."

He warned that such clubs "create artificial inflation on transfer fees and salaries."

And he said that often meant competitors felt they had to follow the trend in order to succeed, even at the risk of endangering their own economic structures, adding: "The risk of going under is enormous."

Last season's title-winners in England and France, Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain were given the biggest punishments when UEFA imposed its first sanctions to clubs that had infringed the Financial Fair Play regulations.

The FFP measures, aimed at restoring the health of European football's finances, have come under fire for holding back ultra-rich club owners who want to transform their teams, thereby maintaining the established elite.


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