Italian league football was thrown back into chaos late last night when the eight rebel Serie A clubs rejected the latest pay-TV offer.
The start of the season has already been put back from September 1 to 15 because of the problems in reaching a deal over TV rights. The rebel eight are Brescia, Chievo, Empoli, Modena, Atalanta, Como, Perugia and Piacenza.
They have been supported in their battle for a better deal by Roma president Franco Sensi. He is furious that Adriano Galliani, the league president who is also chief executive of Milan, agreed a highlights deal with state broadcaster RAI without waiting for a live-TV contract to be agreed.
By Keir Radnedge