After more than two months, Virtus Bologna returns to speak. It does so through CEO Luca Baraldi, during the press conference to present the new season ticket campaign. These are important and harsh words, especially on the subject of TV and LBA rights. Here are the key steps.
ON THE SILENCE OF THESE TWO MONTHS
“We haven’t talked all summer, as is our style. We have done the facts, we want to be judged for what the pitch says and for the attitudes that we will all have in the competitions we face ».
ON THE PLAYGROUND
«We will play 9 matches at the Paladozza, 5 in the EuroLeague and 4 in the LBA. Then, from 10/12, against Scafati, we will move to the Arena and we will stay there until the end of the season ».
ON THE MARKET
«We bet a lot on EuroLeague. Appropriate to have two teams with players playing in the league and much less in Europe. I hope it is appreciated that we have also invested in young people. Furthermore, we will have two new signings such as Abass and Mannion to say ».
ON THE ITALIAN-SPAIN CONTEMPORANEITY, OLYMPIA-VIRTUS
«Sergio Scariolo is away now. We talked about it by phone, we will do it with the institutions, FIba and EuroLeague. It’s a problem, the hope is that an agreement can be found between the two federations, just look at how many matches the basketball players have to support ».
«We are the only ones, with Milan, who have not voted for the renewal of the Lega president. And the only ones to vote against the assignment of TV rights, because we wanted them in the clear. With the television receipts we don’t pay for the bus for the first round ».
“Beyond this aspect, we believe it is important to say that the state collects 22% of ticketing revenues. It is our duty to pursue these issues too, which in a moment like this should be changed “
ON THE FAILURE TO SUPPORT GANDINI
«We made very subjective evaluations, we did not compare ourselves with Milan, which then had a casual convergence with us. But if we and Olimpia, the two most important clubs, had the same idea of doubting Gandini … Let me be clear, I only partially attribute the responsibilities to him. Today we are not able to develop revenues, we are linked to individual subjects, I expected a change of pace there in this management. We were Gandini’s promoters at the beginning ».
ON THE LATEST COMPARISONS IN LBA
«Let me give an example. The director of Rai Sport became Alessandra De Stefano, whom we appreciate. You called it as I called Mediaset, and Milan thought like us. I took a free-to-air basketball initiative as the TV contracts were about to expire. I made an opening, then I told the president “you go ahead”. I have been heavily blamed by two companies. I was told to mind my own business “because this is about the league”. Okay, I stepped aside, I thought I was doing the right thing. I have not attended Lega meetings since then. Gandini is to blame for not having opposed this way of thinking. We believed that that money was not for Virtus, but for basketball, to make it grow. Volleyball takes 200,000,000 in four years, we go to the newspapers happy because we get 10 in 3. But are we kidding? I don’t think volleyball is worth a twentieth ».
«Why should I continue to invest in Italian basketball? Why should I continue to invest in young Italians? Which we continue to do, but let’s give ourselves a term then. If not, we play in the EuroLeague and let the children play in the league. Just get in the top 8, then in the playoffs I make the others play. Do we have to get there? But when you go away, the buildings fill up. And then, if we and Milan try to say in a subdued way “let’s try to do this”, a president should have the courage to speak clearly and directly ».
ON BASKETBALL IN LIGHT
«Now where are we going to see basketball this year? I do not know yet”.
«There are those who speak and take disqualifications, and those who do not speak and take disqualifications. And I’ll stop here ».
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