Italy sets up body to oversee professional sports clubs’ finances

By Reuters
May 25, 2024
A general view of Italy's lower house of Parliament Montecitorio Palace in Rome on July 20, 2022. — Reuters

ROME: Italy’s government on Friday agreed to set up a committee to oversee the budgets of professional clubs in sports including soccer and basketball, in order to tackle the sector’s financial issues and ensure fair competition.


A draft decree seen by Reuters ahead of a cabinet meeting which approved the plan said the “independent committee” would look after “the legality and regularity” of professional clubs’ finances, to ensure they are properly managed and sustainable.

It will be able to issue opinions which may lead to measures concerning “admission, participation and exclusion” of clubs from professional competitions. Initial reports of plans by Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni’s government to overseeclub finances sparked outrage this month among top sports officials, concerned that such measures could pave the way for political interference in their affairs.

“The common goal is not only to reduce debts, but above all to work on the respect of fair competition and enable the supervisory bodies ... to take the right decisions,” said Sports Minister Andrea Abodi. “I am convinced that ... even those against it will work together to ensure that this new entity succeeds,” Abodi added.