Ceferin: “The draw was a UEFA failure and I apologize”

17 Dec 2021

While Real Madrid continues to press their disappointment and anger about the fact that they were drawn against Benfica instead of Paris Saint-Germain due to a UEFA error in Monday’s Champions League draw, the governing body’s president, Aleksander Ceferin, has admitted that the draw was UEFA’s fault and apologized.

The incident stemmed from a blunder by the grouping computer software system, which incorrectly advised the humans in charge of the draw not to put Manchester United’s ball in the process of pulling out Atletico Madrid’s opponents.

“Obviously, the draw was a failure for UEFA, we depend on technology and maybe we should depend less, UEFA apologises to all,” Ceferin explained in a statement.

“Something was wrong with the software.

“UEFA contacted the provider of the software and it was decided that we had to repeat the draw in full because we didn’t know exactly what the error had produced, our decision was transparent.”

The draw debacle was another stain on what has been a difficult year for UEFA, with the wounds from the attempted European Super League still open.

“It has been a difficult year, with many challenges, we have been dealing with the pandemic for almost two years,” he added.

“I’m very proud of European football, fans, the media and of the entire football society.”

2022 doesn’t promise to get any easier for Ceferin either, with the small matter of new Financial Fair Play rules being introduced into European competitions, and the calendar issues created by the scheduling of the 2022 Qatar World Cup.

“We are discussing with the leagues, the rights holders and I have spoken with the Spanish, English and German league,” he continued.

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