A dozen of the world’s top football clubs have agreed to create a breakaway European Super League which would up-end the entire sport, according to reports.
Multiple outlets said six clubs from England (Manchester United, Liverpool, Manchester City, Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham), three from Spain (Real Madrid, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid) and three from Italy (Juventus, AC Milan and Inter) had either signed up for or expressed interest in the international competition.
The Times reported Manchester City was the only English club yet to officially sign onto the plan.
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The move would create utter chaos in Europe’s top leagues, ripping the richest and most successful clubs out of them, creating greater economic disparity between the haves and have-nots, and potentially force changes to broadcast deals which in turn would create chaos for the clubs not included in the Super League.
The announcement was said to be planned for Sunday (Monday AEDT), in an attempt to overshadow UEFA’s upcoming announcement of an expanded Champions League.
The dozen clubs have been trying to grab other big teams, such as Germany’s Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund and France’s PSG, to join their breakaway group, but they’re yet to agree to the radical plan.
“Officials spent the weekend in discussions about ways to block the plan, including potentially banning the breakaway teams from domestic leagues and from next season’s Champions League, with the breakaway slated to begin in 2022,” the New York Times report stated.
Leaked documents from January, mentioned in that report, suggested teams would be promised $US425 million each to sign up to the Super League.
One proposal for the Super League would see 15 permanent members, plus five other clubs who would qualify annually. Those 20 teams would then be split into two groups of 10, playing between 18 and 23 matches a season.
However a proposal reported by The Times also stated matches would be midweek and clubs would still play in domestic leagues.
FIFA has previously warned that any player who joined an unsanctioned league, as the Super League would be, would in turn be banned from the World Cup.