The Deutsche Fußball Liga (DFL) have been thwarted in the attempted plan to bring outside investment into German football by failing to get the required two-thirds majority of club to vote in favour of the deal.
The thirty six clubs in the Bundesliga ands 2.Bundesliga voted at a special meeting held in Frankfurt and the DFL’s plan received twenty votes in favour, eleven votes against and there were five abstentions. The vote is a huge blow to the aspirations of the DFL leadership led by chairman of the supervisory board, Hans-Joachim Watzke, and the interim managing directors, Axel Hellmann and Oliver Leki.
The DFL had dangled the carrot of a capital investment of around two billion euros, but there has been a concerted effort amongst fans groups to resit the plan saying it could undermine the German fan culture. Critics had pointed out that a possible partner would not be satisfied with the role of spectator and could have made demands over kick-off times and dates to suit an international TV audience.
The plan is now seemingly dead in the water and can be seen as another victory for the voice of the fans in Germany. There are those however, who argue that the DFL plan would have brought in much-needed investment to help the German leagues at least start to plug the gargantuan disparity between themselves and other top European league like the Premier League, where the spending of one club can outstrip that of the entire league in Germany.