UEFA has slammed a new breakaway Super League that was announced Sunday with the participation of big-name English, Spanish and Italian teams. European soccer’s governing body issued a statement on the matter calling out the proposal and reiterating that the English (FA), Spanish (RFEF) and Italian (FIGC) associations are against the “cynical project” and thanked “French and German clubs” for their “refusal” to join the breakaway league.
Twelve top European soccer clubs agreed to create “The Super League,” a European club competition that would be separate to UEFA’s Champions and Europa Leagues. Here are the 12 teams, which include all of the Premier League’s “Big Six” as well as three teams from Spain and three from Italy.
- AC Milan
- Atletico Madrid
- Inter Milan
- Manchester City
- Manchester United
- Real Madrid
- Tottenham Hotspur
The Super League says it plans on becoming a “new mid-week competition” that will feature 20 clubs.
“We will help football at every level and take it to its rightful place in the world,” Real Madrid president and Super League Chairman Florentino Pèrez said in a statement. “Football is the only global sport in the world with more than four billion fans and our responsibility as big clubs is to respond to their desires.”
In a statement, UEFA — which was was due to meet on Monday to finalize plans for a redesign of the Champions League — threatened to ban clubs from European competition if they joined a super league.
“If this were to happen, we wish to reiterate that we – UEFA, the English FA, RFEF, FIGC, the Premier League, LaLiga, Lega Serie A, but also FIFA and all our member associations – will remain united in our efforts to stop this cynical project, a project that is founded on the self-interest of a few clubs at a time when society needs solidarity more than ever, UEFA said in a statement.
“We will consider all measures available to us, at all levels, both judicial and sporting in order to prevent this happening. Football is based on open competitions and sporting merit; it cannot be any other way.
“As previously announced by FIFA and the six Federations, the clubs concerned will be banned from playing in any other competition at domestic, European or world level, and their players could be denied the opportunity to represent their national teams.
“We call on all lovers of football, supporters and politicians, to join us in fighting against such a project if it were to be announced. This persistent self-interest of a few has been going on for too long. Enough is enough.”
The Premier League also issued a statement condemning a European super league on Sunday.
“The Premier League condemns any proposal that attacks the principles of open competition and sporting merit which are at the heart of the domestic and European football pyramid,” said the statement. “Fans of any club in England and across Europe can currently dream that their team may climb to the top and play against the best. We believe that the concept of a European Super League would destroy this dream.”
The estimated earnings for would-be fixtures signing up to the proposed super league are at least $425 million. Each of the would-be permanent members of the proposed super league are being promised 350 million euros, or $425 million, to sign up, per documents obtained by the New York Times. JP Morgan Chase & Co. were reportedly approached to raise financing for the project that has seen FIFA back UEFA by threatening to ban any players involved in such a league from future World Cup competition.
The Super League would play midweek matches with 16 fixed soccer clubs and four qualifiers from domestic competitions with two groups of 10 and the top four teams in each qualifying for the knockout stages ahead of a weekend final.