Haymarket is launching a European football magazine on behalf of Uefa.
Champions will be the official Champions League magazine published bimonthly to coincide with key matches in the competition.
The 132-page full-colour glossy will feature interviews with star players, club managers and referees. It will be based in Teddington and rolled out across Europe with separate editions in French and German.
Editor Paul Simpson said: “I think it’s got quite a bit of potential. You only have to look at the amount of coverage given to Champions League games to see the massive appetite for information about the tournament.
“Some people were saying it had lost its lustre but the past two years have proved them wrong. There is a hell of a lot of hunger for good-quality editorial about the Champions League and we will be trying to provide it.”
Simpson, who launched Haymar-ket’s flagship football magazine FourFourTwo in 1994, claimed there would be little overlap between the titles. “I would imagine people who buy FourFourTwo would buy this as well, to give them a slightly different perspective,” he said. The closest rival to Champions in the football sector will be IPC’s World Soccer which sells 55,216 copies a month.
Champions will be sold on the news-stands throughout the UK and Europe with a number of copies given away free to sponsors, VIPS and media through Uefa.
Simpson is in the process of recruiting a full-time team including the positions of deputy editor, French editor, chief sub-editor and staff writer. Tim Scott, art director on United Review, will work across both titles and Barry Ainslie (ex-FourFourTwo) is art editor.
Simpson previously worked on customer titles for Haymarket. Prior to that he was editor of Focus magazine.
By Ruth Addicott