ECA release long-awaited statement regarding Super League plans, after Liverpool, Chelsea & more fail to attend meeting
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An update on the proposed plans for the formation of a European Super League has been forthcoming on Sunday evening.
New order eyed
The major talking point across the European football landscape over the last 12 hours has of course surrounded plans for a host of the continent’s top clubs to break away from the established order, to set up their own ‘Super League’.
The sides widely reported to be at the heart of such plans come from England, Italy, and Spain, in the form of:
Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal, Tottenham, Juventus, Inter Milan, AC Milan, Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid.
The heavyweights of German and French football, on the other hand, remain opposed to the idea, which, all told, would be expected to see 20 teams face off for glory in a Champions League replacement of sorts.
Super League has a problem: PSG & Bayern don’t want in (not today at least). PSG been approached but for now, feel loyalty to domestic league, to UEFA + concerned what it means for clubs outside elite. Source: “European football is not only for super-rich” https://t.co/QU47UJsFGL
— Adam Crafton (@AdamCrafton_) April 18, 2021
The news of course arrived just 24 hours before UEFA’s expected announcement regarding the reformatting of European football’s premiere club competition, featuring 36 teams in a new ‘Swiss Model’ format.
The Super League proposal, though, has since inevitably been met by a widespread backlash on the part of fans, pundits and football organisations alike.
UEFA explicitly warned any clubs planning to take part that they risk being ‘banned from playing in any other domestic competition, at European or International level’, whilst individual players ‘could be denied the opportunity to represent their national teams’.
UEFA, the English Football Association, the Premier League, the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), LaLiga, the Italian Football Federation (FIGC) and Lega Serie A have today released a statement.
Read it in full here: 👇
— UEFA (@UEFA) April 18, 2021
Such threats came ahead of a predicted announcement this evening, outlining the official plans for a breakaway tournament to be formed.
To this point, however, such confirmation has not been forthcoming.
Instead, a statement has been released on the part of the European Club Association, an organisation chaired by Juventus president Andrea Agnelli, who is also reported to be a leading voice behind the push for a Super League format.
The ECA, though, have insisted that they remain vehemently opposed to such plans, with their focus instead solely on the planned restructuring of European competition under UEFA’s watch, from 2024:
‘In light of today’s reports on the subject of a so-called breakaway league, ECA as the body representing 246 leading clubs across Europe, reiterates its stated commitment to working on developing the UEFA club competitions (UCCs) model with UEFA for the cycle beginning 2024 and that a ‘closed super league model’ to which media articles refer would be strongly opposed by ECA.’
‘ECA would refer to the position adopted by its Executive Board at its meeting last Friday 16th April, namely that it supports a commitment to work with UEFA on a renewed structure for European Club Football as a whole post-2024.’
‘With ECA’s support, UEFA’s Executive Committee is being asked to endorse these commitments at its meeting on 19th April along with pursuing efforts to reach an agreement on the future relationship between ECA and UEFA.’
‘The ECA Executive Board will be convening over the coming days to take appropriate decisions in light of any further developments.’
— ECA (@ECAEurope) April 18, 2021
Significantly, it has since also been revealed that none of the 12 clubs to have backed the push for a Super League opted to attend this evening’s emergency ECA meeting.
Representatives from Bayern Munich and PSG were present, though, at a summit which was overseen by Ajax chief Edwin van der Sar.
ECA held an emergency meeting this evening. None of the 12 clubs in the ESL proposals responded to invitations to attend. Bayern Munich and PSG did attend. Meeting was chaired by Edwin van der Sar. Restated that agreements reached on Friday re CL reform should were still valid.
— Simon Stone (@sistoney67) April 18, 2021