CELTIC have joined a group of four clubs who are warning UEFA that its slide towards a Champions Super League will ruin European football.

The Scottish champions’ chief-executive, Peter Lawwell, teamed up with club heads from Ajax, PSV Eindhoven and Anderlecht to travel to Switzerland last week to speak with UEFA’s power brokers about their fears over the new Champions League plans.

From August 2018, the group stage will be an elite monopoly between England, Spain, Germany and Italy, who will get half of the 32 places on offer.

Read more: Callum McGregor credits Celtic's fitness as key factor in this season's success

However, Lawwell’s lobby group have told UEFA that it risks damaging football finances across the rest of the continent if the Champions League stays on its new path.

The anxiety is already in the top club boardrooms in the Netherlands and Belgium, with Dutch media yesterday leaking the disquiet of Ajax, who are four-time European Champions. It seems, though, that Ajax, PSV, Anderlecht and Celtic are speaking on behalf of a larger group of clubs from Europe’s less-wealthy leagues.

The quartet met last week at UEFA’s headquarters in Switzerland with its secretary general, Theodore Theodoridis, and Champions League executive, Giorgio Marchetti, according to Dutch newspaper Voetbal International. They told UEFA they want to see the Champions League group stage expanded to 48 clubs.

The UEFA executives were told that the new Champions League format would see “a collapse of Europe’s football eco-system,” according to Voetbal International.

Lawwell’s lobby group stated television contracts in the smaller countries have collapsed in recent years, in contrast with the explosion of broadcasting deals in the richest leagues which now accounts for three-quarters of the television cash.

Read more: Callum McGregor credits Celtic's fitness as key factor in this season's success

The quartet argued that an expanded Champions League might be less attractive in drawing views in the top countries, but it will boost any future television deals in the smaller ones.

Television money, of course, is at the core of the Champions League changes. The English Premier League’s new £9bn television deal was the catalyst for other major European leagues to force a revamp of the competition last August.

The top teams, led by European Clubs Association chairman and Bayern Munich chief executive, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, threatened a walkout if changes didn’t go through. They want a 24-team event, with 16 of those spaces guaranteed for the top four leagues.

At a UEFA meeting in Monaco last August, Lawwell was able to persuade them to keep the "champions' route" for qualification purposes, the one which allows the Scottish Premiership champions to retain a lifeline into the wealthy competition. Notably, ensuring that Scotland’s champion would not face top-two clubs from leagues ranked five to 10 in the qualifiers.

Read more: Callum McGregor credits Celtic's fitness as key factor in this season's success

One of UEFA’s changes was on the coefficient, meaning clubs are now judged on their own record rather than the national league coefficient, in which the Scotland’s top flight has made minimal contribution recently.

The other was for historical success in the competition being brought in as a coefficient points contributor, meaning Celtic’s European Cup win in 1967 retains modern-day value for the club.

Lawwell said when the changes took place last August: “This decision affects all European football and we just hope what’s done now and in the future will benefit every European club.”