Italy's top flight Serie A clubs confirmed they will split from the second division Serie B sides in an attempt to make up ground on England's Premier League and Spain's La Liga. The move is based on the English clubs 1992 breakaway which transformed the sport and made the Premier League the richest in the world.
The leagues will split from the start of the 2010-11 season and means the Serie A sides will no longer have to pay any money to their Serie B counterparts.
There is also the possibility that the clubs, as in England, will negotiate a collective television rights deal. Currently they negotiate individually, resulting in the larger clubs such as AC Milan, Inter Milan and Juventus taking the bulk of the money and leaving little for the rest.
Over the summer there was great embarrassment in Italy that two of its biggest stars, Milan's Kaka and Inter's Zlatan Ibrahimovic, moved to clubs in Spain and was seen as further indication of the dwindling power of the once might Italian league. The split was approved in July but was ratified on Tuesday after a meeting of club presidents. Maurizio Beretta was elected as president for the two divisions, but they will operate as separate entities.