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Aug 5, 2011

Galliani fears for Serie A

AC Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani fears Serie A could become only the fifth most successful league in Europe.

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As a result of recent performances in European competition, the Italian league has fallen behind England, Spain and Germany in the UEFA co-efficients and, as of this season, only the top three in Serie A will qualify for the Champions League.

Galliani has now said he expects Ligue 1 to overtake Serie A in the coming years and insists the clubs "can't do anything" to prevent it due to laws on building new stadia.

"Thanks to the new stadiums being built for Euro 2016, I predict that the French will also overtake us," he told La Gazzetta dello Sport. "We could be competitive with equal factors and situations, but unfortunately that's not the case.

"Spain has the advantage that they don't have collective TV rights. Germany have overtaken us thanks to the wonderful new stadiums they built for the World Cup in 2006.

"It's like theatres and restaurants. There are beautiful theatres and ugly ones; there are luxury restaurants and then pizzerias. But we can't do anything. Without stadiums we can't do anything and without a new law we can't construct new stadiums.

"Even the politicians have understood that, but the design of the law has remained blocked between the two branches of parliament."

Having exited the Champions League to competition newcomers Tottenham in the first knockout round last season, Galliani accepts Milan will not be considered among the favourites to win the competition this season but is hopeful they can cause an upset.

"We've become outsiders but there are always surprises in the Champions League," he said. "Look at Schalke last year, they got to the semi-finals. I hope Milan can be the next surprise."

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