Manchester United’s David Gill has been voted to the the European Club Association’s (ECA) 15-man board, beating CSKA Moscow president Evgeni Giner to the seat. The ECA the 53-nation pan-European club lobbying association that replaced the G14 on the latter group’s dissolution in January 2008. Gill’s election to the group, which is chaired by Bayern Munich’s Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, increases the power base that United enjoys at the game’s top table. United is one of the founder-members of the organisation.
“I’m obviously very pleased to be elected,” Gill told The Associated Press. “The ECA has a very important role to play in the relationship with UEFA and other bodies within European and world football.”
Gill is one of only two new faces on the board along with Real Madrid president Florentino Perez. It is perhaps ironic then – with a combined debt of the two clubs being close to £1,500 million – that one of the group’s main priorities is said to be cost cutting to ensure that football remains sustainable.
“We are the people who run the clubs, we understand the issues. All parties need to work together to come up with a set of rules and regulations that everyone buys into,” said Gill.
There are 144 clubs in the ECA, which holds its six-monthly general assembly tomorrow. The transfer of young players from continental Europe to England is sure to be a hot topic!