Super League: from the announcement of the pharaonic project to the withdrawal of English clubs, a look back at three days that shook world football

From the announcement of the launch of the Super League and the about-face of the founding clubs, back to three days of storm in European football.

The earth trembles in the night of Sunday April 18 to Monday 19. While UEFA had to validate the following day its new format of the Champions League, the launch of a European Super League is formalized. An official website has been created and information is relayed in unison by all twelve founding clubs: Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City, Tottenham, FC Barcelona, ​​Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid , Juventus, AC Milan and Inter Milan. At 5.19 p.m., sensing the imminent formalization of the Super League project, UEFA had drawn up a preventive press release threatening to exclude from all national and international competition the clubs which would participate in a private league, as well as their players.

The twelve secessionists aspire to income much higher than those of the current Champions League and regular by eliminating the sporting hazard of a non-qualification at the end of a failed season in its domestic championship. A situation that Arsenal, Tottenham, MU or AC Milan have experienced in recent years.

The day after the launch, JP Morgan, the largest American bank, announced that it was financing the project. 3.5 billion euros are already promised to the founding clubs, the financial markets are rubbing their hands. The action of Juventus Turin closes sharply on Monday late afternoon (+ 17%) while that of Manchester United is progressing significantly in New York.

This European Super League between the most prestigious European clubs is a sea serpent and was claimed for several years in particular by Florentino Pérez, president of Real Madrid, who is one of the instigators of this competition. Another leader, Andrea Agnelli, boss of Juventus Turin, had first taken the care of leaving the European Association of Clubs (ECA) to become vice-president of this new project.

As soon as the launch of this Super League was announced, hostile reactions began to emerge at all levels. Governments, football bodies, federations, leagues, clubs, players and fans are in tune against this attack on universal and popular football based on meritocracy. The President of the Republic in person, Emmanuel Macron, congratulates the French clubs for not having joined the project and had declared on Sunday evening that he would support the authorities “To protect the integrity of federal competitions, whether national or European.”

Other heads of state and government including British Prime Minister Boris Johnson are also rising to the front. Through one of its commissioners, the European Union declares: “We must defend a European model of sport based on values, on diversity and inclusion.” The FFF and the LFP denounce the “Hegemonic dreams of an oligarchy.” Javier Tebas, the president of La Liga, for his part appoints “Power Point Super League gurus, who come out of the darkness of the bar at 5am, intoxicated with selfishness and lack of solidarity.”

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