UEFA leads backlash against Super League, UK government vows to intervene

Manchester, England — UEFA of the European Football Federation responded to Monday’s departure Super League plan, saying that related players and clubs, including three Champions League semi-finals this season, could be expelled from the tournament. Caused a repulsion.

UEFA President Alexander Cheferin described the Super League plan as “grimacing” for all football enthusiasts at an emergency meeting the day after the 12 top European clubs announced the new league.

“As soon as possible, they (clubs) and players must be banned from all our competitions,” he added.

Three of the 12 clubs in the new league (Real Madrid, Manchester City and Chelsea) may withdraw from the Champions League semi-finals this season, UEFA executive committee member Jesper Moller said on Danish broadcasters I told DR.

“The club has to go, I expect it to happen on Friday. Then I need to find a way to end the Champions League tournament (this season),” said the Danish FA. The person in charge, Moller, said.

People leave FC Barcelona office when 12 of Europe's top football clubs start withdrawal super league
People will leave FC Barcelona’s office as 12 of Europe’s top football clubs launch a departure super league in Barcelona, ​​Spain on April 19, 2021. (AlbertGea / Reuters)

In contrast to the Champions League, where teams need to qualify in the national league, the Renegade Club (6 from the English Premier League and 3 from Spain and Italy) is guaranteed a place in the new tournament.

US investment bank JP Morgan is funding the new league and providing the founding club with a € 3.5 billion ($ 4.2 billion) grant to spend on infrastructure and recovery from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. ..

Premier League clubs will meet on Tuesday to discuss the crisis, but there are no six withdrawal clubs as the remaining 14 clubs are focused on their response.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has opposed the plan, saying sports minister Oliver Dowden will do everything possible to thwart the league and consider options to penalize six Premier League teams. doing.

Anfield is expected to launch 12 of Europe's top football clubs withdrawal super leagues
Anfield is believed to have launched 12 of Europe’s top football clubs in Liverpool, England, on April 19, 2021. (Carl Recine / Reuters)

Mr Dauden said the government would try to thwart the project if football authorities couldn’t.

“If they can’t act, we’ll do,” he told Congress. “Put everything on the table so this doesn’t happen.”

Prince William, who is also chairman of the Football Association, said the Super League risks “damaging the games we love.”

“Shameful proposal”

UEFA chief Sepferin said the Super League has gone against the heart of the European football pyramid, where all clubs can dream of playing in the Champions League.

“We oppose the shameful self-serving proposals of some greedyly motivated European clubs. We are all united against the nonsense of this project,” he said. I added.

“As previously announced by FIFA (the world governing body of football) and the six (continental) federations, players on teams that may play in the closed league are banned from playing in the World Cup and the Euro. ..

Images of Rafael Benitez, Kenny Dalglish, Joe Fagan and Bob Paisley can be seen outside Anfield. Twelve of Europe's top football clubs launch a secession super league.
Images of Rafael Benitez, Kenny Dalglish, Joe Fagan and Bob Paisley can be seen outside Anfield. On April 19, 2021, 12 of Europe’s top football clubs will launch a withdrawal super league in Liverpool, England. (CarlRecine / Reuters)

“We are still evaluating with the legal team, but we will take all possible sanctions.”

FIFA warned in January that withdrawal leagues would not be allowed to them and participating players could be banned from participating in the World Cup.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino will speak with the UEFA delegation on the issue of withdrawal at the annual meeting in Montreux, Switzerland, on Tuesday.

Bans or other sanctions can pave the way for complex court battles. The Super League letter urged FIFA and UEFA to agree to the negotiations and said it hoped there would be a withdrawal league in parallel with the current European club tournament.

Champions League

The UEFA meeting was initially planned to expand the Champions League from 32 teams to 36 teams and confirm plans to create more group stage games before the knockout round. This is a move to soothe the top clubs.

Ceferin said the new format will start in the 2024/25 season, but the Super League announcement has overshadowed it. He also emphasized that UEFA distributes nearly 90% of its revenue to all levels of the game.

“Super leagues are just money, a dozen money. I don’t want to call them a dozen dozen, but UEFA is about football development.”

The Super League’s guaranteed spot goes against the long-standing tradition of European football, but the founding club claims it creates a more sustainable financial model.

“The formation of the Super League occurs when a pandemic accelerates the instability of the existing European football economic model,” the club said.

In the past, the threat of withdrawal has led to compromises in format and revenue sharing between UEFA and the Champions League big clubs.

But this time, the language used suggests a fierce battle to come.

Founding member

Manchester United owned by the American Glazer family, Premier League Liverpool and Arsenal owned by the United States, Manchester City supported by Abu Dhabi, Chelsea owned by Russia, and Tottenham Hotspur who dismissed manager Jose Mourinho on Monday Until the plan signed by.

Barcelona and Atletico Madrid have joined Real Madrid from Spain, and AC Milan and Inter Milan have joined Juventus to form a trio from Italy.

Qatar-owned Paris Saint-Germain and European champion Bayern Munich, owned by a majority of fans, are not registered, so France and Germany are not represented.

The Super League is aiming for a league of 15 founding members and 20 teams, and said the other five clubs will qualify each season and start playing “as soon as possible”.

Juventus JUVE.MI’s share price soared nearly 18% on Monday and Manchester United’s share price soared 6.8%, but fans of the clubs involved, as well as major European national leagues, football federations and broadcasters, blame. United in. French President Emmanuel Macron and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi have also expressed concern.

British broadcaster BT Sport, which pays hundreds of millions of pounds a year to screen the Champions League, said the game needed to be protected.

“BT believes that the formation of a European super league could have a negative impact on the long-term health of football in this country,” he said.

At the Liverpool Premier League match on Monday at Leeds United, fans protested outside and Leeds players wore warm-up T-shirts with the slogan “Earn It” under the Champions League logo. ..

The match ended one-on-one, ironically undermining Liverpool’s hope that Liverpool won their sixth victory in 2019, but the owners seem to be trying to undermine it.

Simon Evans