Real Madrid has rejected UEFA’s offer of a “partial” and “inadequate” refund on its Champions League match tickets for last season after the competition was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Spanish giants, along with several other clubs, had already played their round of 16 games before the pandemic outbreak forced the competition to be postponed. However, they were knocked out in the following round by Manchester City, who will now face Lyon in the quarter-finals.

UEFA subsequently offered a partial refund to all clubs that did not make the quarter-finals, which was based on the proportion of the tournament that they had played. In other words, Real Madrid would receive a refund on their tickets for the two knock-out games they had not played, rather than a full refund for their entire campaign.

However, Real Madrid has rejected this offer, calling it “inadequate” and a “disproportionate” response to their financial losses. In a strongly-worded statement, the club criticized UEFA’s handling of the situation and called for a more appropriate compensation package.

“We cannot accept a solution that is so disproportionate to the losses we have suffered,” the statement read. “The partial refund offered by UEFA does not reflect the actual damage we have suffered from our elimination from the competition.”

Real Madrid’s decision is the latest twist in a long-running saga involving the Champions League and the coronavirus pandemic. The competition was initially suspended in March 2020, with the last 16 games postponed indefinitely. In June, UEFA announced plans to resume the tournament in August, using a single-elimination format played in Lisbon, Portugal.

However, a number of clubs expressed concerns about the safety of their players and staff, as well as the financial implications of playing games without fans. Some also argued that the tournament had lost its integrity, as the delay had allowed some teams to regain fitness and form that they might not have had otherwise.

Real Madrid was one of the clubs that voiced these concerns, but eventually agreed to participate in the rescheduled competition. However, their campaign ended in disappointment, as they lost 2-1 to Manchester City in the first leg of the knock-out round and were then eliminated on aggregate after the second leg was cancelled.

The club says it has suffered significant financial losses as a result, including losses on ticket sales, sponsorship revenue, and broadcasting rights. It claims that a partial refund is not sufficient to cover these losses, and that UEFA should offer a more comprehensive compensation package.

Real Madrid’s decision has been supported by some other clubs, including Italian side Atalanta, who were knocked out in the quarter-finals by Paris Saint-Germain. Atalanta says it has also suffered significant financial losses as a result of the pandemic, and that UEFA should do more to help affected clubs.

UEFA has not yet responded to Real Madrid’s criticisms, but has previously defended its handling of the situation. In an interview with Spanish broadcaster Movistar, UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin said that the partial refund was the only option available, and that the organization had done its best to protect the interests of all clubs.

“We had to refund some tickets because some matches were not played, but we did what we could,” Ceferin said. “It is not my fault that the virus arrived, but we did what we could to protect the interests of all the clubs.”

Real Madrid’s rejection of UEFA’s offer is likely to add further tension to an already difficult relationship between the two organizations. The club has been critical of UEFA in the past, particularly over its handling of the financial fair play rules, and has been involved in several high-profile disputes with the governing body.

The coronavirus pandemic has only added to this tension, as clubs have struggled to cope with the financial losses caused by the shutdown of football. Real Madrid’s decision to reject UEFA’s offer is an indication of the severity of these losses, and the growing frustration among clubs about the lack of support from the governing body.

Overall, it seems likely that the dispute between Real Madrid and UEFA will continue for some time, as both organizations continue to pursue their own interests in the midst of a complex and uncertain situation. However, it is clear that the coronavirus pandemic has forced a reassessment of the relationship between clubs and governing bodies, and that changes may be necessary to ensure the future stability of European football.