UEFA President Alexander Seferin said on Monday that players from 12 clubs forming their own Super League could be banned from this year’s European Championship and next year’s World Cup.
Seferin showed his anger and betrayal when talking about “snakes” by the leaders of some of the richest European clubs, and wished that the UEFA could ban Super League clubs and players “sooner” from all its matches.
With the Champions League and Europa League semi-finals set to begin next week and Euro 2020 set to begin in June – it is unclear whether UEFA lawyers will be consulted.
Seferin spoke following the UEFA executive committee meeting, and said some “legal assessments” would begin Tuesday morning. The meeting came just hours after English, Italian and Spanish clubs announced plans to threaten to dismantle the historic structure of European football.
“They can’t represent their national teams in any matches,” Seferin previously warned. “UEFA and the football world have come together against the disgraceful self-service program we have seen in the last 24 hours from selected clubs in Europe, which are, above all, driven by greed.”
The 55-member federation of UEFAs is coming together on Tuesday for the annual meeting, including the 24 nations that will play in Euro 2020.
Three of the 12 rebels – Chelsea, Manchester City and Real Madrid – are set to play in the Champions League semi-finals next week. Two more, Manchester United and Arsenal, are in the Europa League semi-finals.
Watch | The reaction to the new Super League has been negative:
The 12 clubs have told FIFA and UEFA leaders they have initiated legal action aimed at preventing threats to prevent competition.
The letter was sent by the English, Spanish and Italian clubs to FIFA president Gianni Infantino and Seferin, who said the Super League had already secured 4 4 billion ($ 6 billion CDN) in funding from a financial institution.
Currently, teams have to qualify for the Champions League each year through their domestic leagues, but the Super League is locked in 15 places for the founding members each season. The seismic action to shake up the game has been partly designed by American owners Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United, who also treat owners in closed American leagues – a model they are trying to replicate in Europe.
The UEFA has warned Super League clubs, including Barcelona, Real Madrid and Juventus, that legal action will be taken against them and that they will be banned from existing domestic competitions, such as the Spanish League, the Premier League and international matches.
“We are concerned that FIFA and UEFA may respond to this invitation, and that punitive measures be taken to exclude any club or player from participating in their respective matches,” Super League clubs wrote to Infantino and Seferin in a letter to the Associated Press. .
“However, your formal statement urges us to take precautionary measures to protect ourselves against such adverse reactions, which not only affect the financial stability under the grant, but are also illegal. It has filed a resolution before the relevant courts to ensure its functioning. “
The courts are not named.
The Super League wants to start a 20-team tournament with 15 founding members, but currently only 12 have signed up. Others include Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City and Tottenham in the UK, Atletico Madrid in Spain and AC Milan and Inter Milan in Italy.
The split came just as the UEFA had agreed to an agreement to expand the Champions League from 2024 onwards. Now, the same officials who supported the plans have decided to go it alone, claiming that the current competition could last – including 13-time European champions Real Madrid and six-time winners Liverpool, despite losing the most successful teams.
“This match is to be played with the domestic league and cup matches that are an integral part of the European football league,” reads the Super League letter to Infantino and Seferin. “We are not trying to change the UEFA Champions League or Europa League, but to compete alongside those.”
Former United midfielder Ander Herrera is one of the few players currently speaking out against the plan. Herrera plays for Paris Saint-Germain, the French champions who have refused to participate in the Super League with big clubs such as Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund in Germany.
Resistance to move
“I believe in the Advanced Champions League,” he told his 2.7 million followers on Twitter, “but the rich don’t steal what people create, it’s nothing but the most beautiful game on the planet.”
Bayern coach Hansie Flick said he was opposed to the Super League.
“I don’t think it’s good for European football,” Flick said on Monday.
Dortmund and Bayern both said they would reject the Super League and support the reform of the existing Champions League. Both are on the European Club Association board that held an emergency meeting on Sunday after representatives of the Super League clubs withdrew from the organization.
“It is the clear opinion of ECA board members that plans to establish a Super League have been rejected,” Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Wattske said in a statement.
“The German clubs mentioned in the ECA panel, FC Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund, presented 100 per cent similar views in all conversations.”
The ECA chairman resigned
The deal was negotiated with the 246-member European Club Association. Juventus President Andrea Agnelli, chairman of the ECA, resigned from the UEFA executive committee overnight.
“He may be the biggest disappointment of all,” Seferin said of Agnelli, whose young daughter became a godfather. “I have never seen a person who would lie as many times and diligently as he did.
“I know who he is now. Who’s honest, who loves football.”
In their letter to FIFA and UEFA leaders, they stated that Super League clubs could play their matches with domestic leagues and trophies.
“We are not trying to change the UEFA Champions League or Europa League, but to compete and stay with those matches,” they said.