Deep crisis in European football around the controversial “Super League” project

Twelve of the most powerful English, Spanish and Italian clubs in Europe are preparing to create their own European competition, competing in the Champions League, reveal several media on Sunday April 18. A closed “Super League” which would exclude German and French clubs and lead to the death of the Champions League. UEFA protests against this project ” cynical “And” based on self-interest », Which she calls to fight.

Earthquake on European football this Sunday, April 18. The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA), the association in charge of European football, was preparing to present on Monday a reform of its flagship competition, the Champions League, announced the daily The team. This was to bring together not 32 but 36 clubs, distribute the qualifiers in four hats, double the number of matches …

But another project, sea serpent for years, overturns the table this Sunday: the “Super League” of Europe, a parallel competition bringing together the elite of European football, is about to be announced. The Times, the Telegraph, Brand, The team, RMC Sport… Several media indicate that twelve clubs are about to turn their backs on the Champions League to prefer this “Super League”.

Why Real Madrid, Juve, Liverpool and others want to cut UEFA

This “Super League” is a project in the making more or less secret for a long time. And this one divides. Its principle: some of the best clubs in Europe – the richest, the most prestigious, the most successful – would create a new closed competition between them, to the detriment of the usual Champions League. And according to the insistent rumors of April 18, it is not just any clubs.

They would be six English clubs, three Spanish clubs and three Italian clubs to work in secret on this project: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham, as well as AC Milan, Inter Milan and Juventus, and finally Atlético de Madrid, FC Barcelona and Real Madrid. Twelve clubs which alone have won the Champions League 40 times in 66 editions (including the current one).

According to The team, their desire is to cut ties with UEFA, with which they have differences over the policy pursued in Europe. For them, the Champions League has lost its luster: declining audiences, falling revenues, diminished appeal by opening up the competition to less armed and less prestigious teams … Hence the “Super League” project. “, Presumed to be more selective, more lucrative and more brilliant. Andrea Agnelli, the president of Juventus, would be the main protagonist … while he said he was happy, until recently, about the upcoming reform of the Champions League.

Bayern Munich and PSG oppose it

This model of “Super League”, which resembles what is done in North America with the NBA (basketball), the NFL (American football) and the NHL (ice hockey), however, does not only have supporters among. the most important clubs in Europe. Bayern Munich, six-time Champions League winners, and Paris Saint-Germain, finalist in 2020 and in the Top 10 richest clubs in the world according to Forbes, are not for.

According to The Athletic, PSG believes that European competition should not be reserved for the richest clubs. ” We stick to the tradition of UEFA “, A source would have indicated. A position that Bayern Munich would therefore also share. This explains why, in the contours envisaged for this “Super League”, no German and French club are included.

“Too much is too much”, storms UEFA, ready to sanction

The information concerning this project of “Super League” caused an outcry in Europe. UEFA responded with a scathing statement. The association indicates that it, as well as the English, Spanish and Italian federations “ but also Fifa and all member associations will remain united in (our) efforts to stop this cynical project, based on the personal interest of a few clubs at a time when society needs solidarity more than ever. ».

L’UEFA menace : « We will consider all possible measures, at all levels, whether judicial or sporting, to prevent this from happening. Football is based on the principle of open competition and sporting merit; It can not be otherwise. (…) The clubs concerned (by the project, note) will be banned from all domestic competitions, at European and world level, and players could be denied the right to represent their national teams. »

Without naming them, UEFA also thanks Bayern Munich and PSG among others: “ We thank the clubs in other countries, in particular the French and German clubs, who refused to subscribe to this. “Still calling on the most people to oppose the project of the twelve incriminated clubs, the European association castigates” this persistent personal interest of a few ” who ” lasts too long ». « Enough is enough », Insists UEFA.


The “Super League gurus, intoxicated with selfishness and lack of solidarity”

In another statement, the English Premier League “ condemns any proposal which attacks the principles of open competition and sporting merit, which are the heart of domestic football and of the European football pyramid ».

In France, the Elysee Palace that Emmanuel Macron supports UEFA: ” The President of the Republic welcomes the position of French clubs to participate in a European football Super League project threatening the principle of solidarity and sporting merit. The French State will support all the steps taken by the LFP, the FFF, UEFA and Fifa (…) »

The English, Spanish and Italian federations have declared their support for UEFA. Javier Tebas, the president of the Spanish Liga, criticized him on Twitter the “gus from the Super League “, Which he describes” intoxicated with selfishness and lack of solidarity “. Christian Seifert, the president of the German Football Association, believes that it would be “ irresponsible to cause irreparable damage to national leagues ».

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