In one of the biggest announcements in football history, the heavily rumoured European Super League has been announced to the world. There have been rumblings for a few years now and especially across the last few months that we could see something like this, and with the UEFA Champions League being set to announce their own reforms today, these 12 clubs have spotted an opportunity and seized it – for the time being, at least.
Today we’re going to try our best to run through the information we have up to this point but in terms of the bigger picture, there’s a very good chance that developments will come pretty rapidly over the course of the next few hours and days.
The proposal suggests that there would be 20 participating clubs with 15 founding members, as well as a qualifying mechanism for five further teams to qualify annually based on their achievements in the prior season. The plan would be for midweek fixtures to take place and for all teams involved to continue competing in their own domestic league – but in this instance, they would be prioritising the Super League ahead of the Champions League and Europa League.
It would all get started in August with clubs taking part in two groups of 10, playing home and away fixtures. The top three in each group will then go on to qualify for the quarter-finals and those in fourth and fifth will compete in a two-legged play-off to confirm the quarter-final line-up for the campaign.
Then, in a similar fashion to the current European competitions, a two-legged knockout format would be used to get all the way through to the final that will conclude at the end of May in a single, one-off fixture.
The six clubs that would take part in The European Super League from England would be as follows: Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea, Tottenham and Arsenal.
The Premier League has come out and condemned this move, threatening all involved clubs with various sanctions.
The three clubs that would take part in The European Super League from Spain would be as follows: Real Madrid, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid.
La Liga has come out and condemned this move, threatening all involved clubs with various sanctions.
The three clubs that would take part in The European Super League from Italy would be as follows: Juventus, Inter Milan and AC Milan.
Serie A has come out and condemned this move, threatening all involved clubs with various sanctions.
As many would expect, UEFA, The FA and FIFA have all come out and vilified this idea and noted they wouldn’t go down without a fight, implying they would ban and suspend all clubs and players from their available competitions.
It was heavily implied that legal action would be pursued and because of that, the 12 founding clubs of The European Super League have already come out and said they have taken legal action of their own to prevent UEFA and FIFA from pushing back against the idea. Right now, it seems as if the plan is to push forward with an August start date, but it’s not yet known what that will be.
Every former player and current pundit has refused to back this plan with the likes of Gary Neville and Stan Collymore being particularly vocal.
That extends to the fanbase of, well, every club in world football. We’ve seen some attempting to explain why this was seen as a good move for the top teams but largely, supporters are worried about what this will do for the future of the beautiful game.
The money and greed that comes with professional football has been rearing its ugly head for years now, perhaps dating back to when the Premier League was first formed in 1992 and TV companies poured as much money as they possibly could into the whole thing. Still, while all of that has created a ripple effect in its own right, this is on a whole other level that many of us still can’t even really comprehend.
The idea that these 12 clubs, and especially teams like Manchester United and Liverpool would go through with this, is outrageous. There’s no other way to really put it and there’s no way to fathom how much of an impact this would have on the sport.
Some may suggest it’ll open up the door for more teams to thrive in their absence but in reality, we don’t know how big this whole thing could get. The project is being funded by JP Morgan, an American investment bank, which should really tell you all that you need to know.
None of the clubs involved in this is pretending like this is anything other than a money grab. They want to fill their pockets and watch other teams suffer and because of that, there are going to be a whole lot of fans who abandon their side in favour of pastures new.
The next phase will be seeing whether or not the Premier League, La Liga, Serie A and UEFA decide to make a stand and punish them for even attempting to get this done. If they decide to suspend or even kick them out of their respective leagues, it will quite literally change football forever – as if it hasn’t done that already.
Some have suggested they all just need to sit down at the table and have an adult conversation about what they both want, but this is going to end in the courts whether we all like it or not.
There’s now an undeniable shadow that has been cast over the remainder of the season in Europe and that in itself is a shame.
The Euros this summer are now going to be in turmoil, the conversation will be solely based on the Super League and it’ll probably stay that way for some time.
We love football, but this is revolting and can’t be supported.