It appears that reports of the death of the new European Super League following the announced intention of withdrawing by the six UK clubs from the project may have been premature.
The Real Madrid president, Florentino Pérez, said the 12 clubs announced last week as founders of the European Super League cannot abandon it due to binding contracts and promised the project would return soon.
Pérez, whose club is one of three along with Barcelona and Juventus yet to withdraw, said it was not so simple for clubs to leave. “I don’t need to explain what a binding contract is but effectively, the clubs cannot leave,” Pérez told Spanish newspaper AS. “Some of them, due to pressure, have said they’re leaving. But this project, or one very similar, will move forward and I hope very soon.”
I somehow cannot see that the existence of a ‘binding contract’ will be sufficient to bring back the six clubs. Lawyers are going to be busy combing through the wording of those documents to find loopholes.
There appear to be other major changes being considered.
Uefa had hoped to stave off the threat of a European Super League with a new 36-team Champions League, which was agreed on Monday.
In announcing their proposals for a Super League that would eventually comprise of 20 teams, the 12-club group said the Champions League reforms did not go far enough.
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez, who was named as the ESL’s chairman, said the competition was set up “to save football” because young people are “no longer interested” in the game because of “a lot of poor quality games”.
None of the Spanish and Italian sides have yet released a statement after the six Premier League teams pulled out.
I cannot believe that the clubs in the ESL, with their high priced lawyers and media people, did not foresee this fiasco. The normal thing would have been to publicly announce that they were considering it and then gauge the response. To present such a major change as a fait accompli was just asking for trouble.
I was also surprised by Perez’s statement that young people are drifting away from the game. Is that true or is he just finding a reason to justify what on the surface looks like a money grab?