Sports editor Mark Lea’s view: Champions League – you’re having a laugh

Adrian Chiles fronting ITV's Champions League coverage
Adrian Chiles fronting ITV's Champions League coverage
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They really need 
to change that theme tune for 
TV coverage of the UEFA Champions League.

How about ‘Money, 
Money, Money’ by ABBA – or Jessie J’s Price Tag lyrics: 
‘It’s not about the money, money, money; We don’t need your money, money, money.’

There are probably songs about being rich and greedy as well. Ultimately that’s what this competition is all about.

It’s a shame we can’t go back to the old days of the 
European Cup when only the champions were allowed into a knockout tournament.

This season that would have meant no place for the likes of Barcelona, Borussia Dortmund or Arsenal.

Instead, we have to put up with a long-running series of group games knowing that the top seeds will probably go through anyway.

But at least all the clubs are getting richer because they obviously need some 
financial help.

And if they can’t qualify, they might even end up with a consolation prize of a spot

They really need 
to change that theme tune for 
TV coverage of the UEFA Champions League.

How about ‘Money, 
Money, Money’ by ABBA – or Jessie J’s Price Tag lyrics: 
‘It’s not about the money, money, money; We don’t need your money, money, money.’

There are probably songs about being rich and greedy as well. Ultimately that’s what this competition is all about.

It’s a shame we can’t go back to the old days of the 
European Cup when only the champions were allowed into a knockout tournament.

This season that would have meant no place for the likes of Barcelona, Borussia Dortmund or Arsenal.

Instead, we have to put up with a long-running series of group games knowing that the top seeds will probably go through anyway.

But at least all the clubs are getting richer because they obviously need some 
financial help.

And if they can’t qualify, they might even end up with a consolation prize of a spot in the Europa League when they have presumably got more important things to worry about on a Thursday night.

The focus this week 
will no doubt be firmly on Liverpool’s return and the game between Bayern 
Munich and Manchester 
City.

And I’m sure that the 
‘experts’ on ITV and Sky Sports will expect us to 
support all the English clubs.

If, for example, you 
support a side who will never reach the top four in the Premier League, why would you want to back one of your rivals just because they are playing a team from Spain, Italy or Germany?

I don’t suppose those 
loyal fans of ‘crisis club’ 
Manchester United will be backing City or Liverpool 
either. And you probably won’t find many neutrals wanting Arsenal and Chelsea to do well.

Let me know when the knockout action gets under way and I might take some interest – especially if the English clubs have been knocked out.