With the announcement of the European Super League (ESL) on Sunday and the ‘big six’ Premier League clubs agreeing to be apart of it, the fans have turned to Twitter to comment on the breaking news.
Previously, Uefa told clubs that any players involved would be banned from all domestic, European and world level competitions, with the footballers taking part unable to represent their country if apart of the ESL. They repeated this again on Sunday. The idea of the league has been widely criticised previously by football authorities, fans, former footballers and managers.
ESL said: “Going forward, the founding clubs look forward to holding discussions with Uefa and Fifa to work together in partnership to deliver the best outcomes for the new league and for football as a whole.”
Boris Johnson has said this morning that the government will do everything they can to make sure the ESL “doesn’t go ahead in the way that it’s currently being proposed” and added “I don’t think that it’s good news for fans, I don’t think it’s good news for football in this country.
“These clubs are not just great global brands – of course they’re great global brands – they’re also clubs that have originated historically from their towns, from their cities, from their local communities, they should have a link with those fans, and with the fan base in their community.”
So what’s the problem? Money has been the biggest motivator, with clubs potentially earning up to €10bn in the first few seasons. Many have said that it will make the ‘richest clubs richer’, whilst leaving the ‘poorest clubs poorer’. Teams who aren’t considered wealthy will probably never get a chance to play at such an elite level, and the league will be lucrative for advertisers and TV broadcasting, meaning revenue will be massive.
The founding teams cannot be relegated, with 5 teams able to qualify into the league, perhaps by winning their own domestic league. The excitement of fighting for a place in the Champions League may diminish also, with the ESL effectively taking over its place. As Aston Villa’s chief executive, Christian Purslow, told the Today Show:
“We have a prestigious European tournament called the Champions League, which enjoys fantastic ratings.
“It’s for that reason that it’s remarkable that so many English clubs are involved in this scheme given they enjoy the benefit of being in the two most compelling and successful football tournaments that are televised around the world.”
The teams who have joined as founding members of the league are AC Milan, Arsenal, Atlético Madrid, Chelsea, Barcelona, Inter Milan, Juventus, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Real Madrid and Tottenham Hotspur.