European Super League clubs will attempt to resurrect their crumbling plans for a breakaway competition in a few years, a leading sports lawyer has suggested.
European football was rocked to its core on Sunday following the announcement of a long-feared Super League by a group of leading clubs.
The Premier League’s so-called “big six” were named as founding clubs of the Super League along with Milan, Inter, Juventus, Barcelona, Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid, whose president – Florentino Perez – was set to head up the new competition as chairman.
UEFA’s response to the initial rumours on Sunday – which were followed by an official announcement from the 12 clubs later in the day – reiterated a previous threat to kick those involved out of other competitions, such as their domestic leagues and the Champions League.
A UEFA executive, Jan Moller, then went a step further on Monday after Europe’s governing body had announced a revamped Champions League, saying he expected Madrid, Chelsea and City to be booted out of the continent’s elite tournament this week ahead of their semi-finals.
Media reports on Tuesday claimed several clubs – including Chelsea and Manchester City – have pulled out, but Richard Cramer, managing director of the sports law firm Front Row Legal, suspects there could be another attempt a few years down the line in spite of the backlash.
Speaking to Stats Perform News, Cramer said: “Even if they put it to bed now, it’s going to come up again in another three years, perhaps when maybe the TV income has plateaued out and the clubs aren’t seeing an improvement on that.
“Is the European Super League, whether it’s a replacement for the Champions League, or even a standalone competition equivalent to a domestic competition, is that going to be more exciting for the fans going forward and for the TV companies?”
“It’s not the first time it’s been floated around. And I think if you look back at previous kinds of false dawns, what it’s tended to do is sort of shake up UEFA to say, ‘Well, in order to avert the threat of the European Super League breakaway’ – and that’s always this kind of phraseology that’s used – ‘we want you to make the Champions League richer, and we want more money out of it’.”
Reports on Tuesday have also suggested Manchester United chief Ed Woodward and Juventus chairman Andrea Agnelli have resigned following their respective roles in the attempted launch of the Super League.