Serie A president Maurizio Beretta has said that there is a fair chance of the League cutting the teams down from 20 to 18 in the near future.
The Italian top division had just 16 teams during the time period between 1967 and 1988 and made the addendum from 18 teams to 20 during very recently in the 2004-05 season. It is believed that now, many club executives think that this change has had a negative effect on the cutthroat competitive nature of the league.
Beretta spoke about the possible reduction of teams in the future but admitted that more planning and an organizing will need to be done before that could happen.
It is a matter we need to discuss in a much deeper way. Clearly if we were to reduce the number of teams, as a consequence we’d also have to revise the mechanism of promotion and relegation. In an 18 team system, there would be only one direct relegation to B, otherwise there is a risk of having a strong instability.
He also reiterated his belief of Serie A already being a very attractive league and pointed out the league’s growth which has happened in the recent years, but might have gone unnoticed.
With just one relegation spot we’d get closer to the NBA system with more guarantees of revenue and a longer perspective in commercializing the league. However, Serie A is already an attractive league. Just look at Juventus-Roma, a wonderful game in a modern stadium bought by 52 licensed companies to air in 200 countries. Football in Italy continues to be a phenomenon of mass mobilization: 25.5 million Italians over 14 years are interested in following the football; 18.1 million are rooting for a teamThere is a consolidation of TV viewers: every matchday, more than 9 million people follow the game, which makes a season’s viewership around 350 million. In addition, there is a moderate increase in attendance in the stadiums, with an average of 24 thousand spectators , almost 3 % more than in 2012-13.