- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 31, 2015

GENEVA (AP) - Europe’s top clubs have agreed to a new deal with UEFA which gives them more money and a bigger say in how European soccer is run.

The European Club Association said Tuesday it renewed a working accord through May 2022 which guarantees clubs at least 200 million euros ($214 million) from UEFA’s 2020 European Championship income. The current deal is for a flat fee of 150 million euros ($161 million) for Euro 2016.

The new deal tops the $209 million that FIFA agreed to with the ECA two weeks ago to share among clubs worldwide from each of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.

Including other considerations, UEFA is likely to give even more than the promised $214 million in 2020.

“Clubs will receive 8 percent of income from broadcast, commercial and ticketing (and) hospitality (for Euro 2020),” the ECA and UEFA said in a statement.

UEFA will also give the 214-member ECA two seats on its policy-making executive committee.

“These achievements are an extraordinary success,” said ECA chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, who is likely to take one of the executive committee places.

Rummenigge, the Bayern Munich chairman, said the new accord “will strengthen the solidarity among the clubs and our sense of responsibility for football.”

UEFA President Michel Platini said in a statement that Rummenigge “has been a pleasure to work with.”

The ECA also gave details of its updated working agreement with FIFA, which requires “explicit consent” from clubs when deciding dates for mandatory release of players to national teams.

FIFA will create a Professional Football Department for club and players’ union delegates to advise the world body.

“ECA now has its strongest ever mandate to promote clubs’ interests at FIFA level and develop a more collaborative working relationship,” the group said.

The deal with UEFA, announced at the clubs’ assembly in Stockholm, also confirmed increased revenue of 2.24 billion euros ($2.4 billion) for the Champions League and Europa League combined over the next three seasons.

The 32 Champions League group-stage clubs will share 1.2 billion euros ($1.29 billion) each season, up from 957 million euros ($1.03 billion) this season. Each is guaranteed a 12 million euro ($12.9 million) entry payment instead of 8.6 million euros ($9.2 million).

The club earning the most prize money from UEFA next season can expect a big increase on the 57.4 million euros ($61.8 million) collected by Champions League winner Real Madrid last season.

Key to the deal was making the second-tier Europa League more lucrative, and giving bigger shares to teams eliminated in the qualifying rounds.

The 48 clubs in the Europa League groups next season will share 381 million euros ($409 million) and be guaranteed 2.4 million euros ($2.58 million). This season, the figures are 232 million euros ($249 million) and 1.3 million euros ($1.4 million).

The ECA was created in 2008 in a peace deal between UEFA and FIFA and top clubs. The governing bodies gave official recognition and a share of major tournament revenues, and clubs dropped legal actions relating to players injured on national team duty and threats to form a breakaway European league.

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