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European Superior League two years later: still an option?

No promotions, no relegation. A closed shop only for Europe’s elite clubs. So is the Europa League still possible? In partnership with Qatar Media City.

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European Superior League two years later: still an option?
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14 Mayıs 2023 - 0:00
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It was a proposal that sent shock waves through football.

No promotions, no relegation. A closed shop only for Europe’s elite clubs. Although two years have passed, the European Magnificent League has not completely disappeared yet. On April 21, 2021, the story broke out and took even the sport’s most seasoned names by surprise.

What was the European Superior League?

The Magnificent League was a proposed ‘closed shop’ league featuring some of the sport’s biggest clubs, with no threat of promotion or relegation, and invite-only participation.

The plans, established by Andrea Agnelli, who previously served as president of Italian giants Juventus, were to have 12 teams in the league guaranteed each season, as well as three other teams, which varied depending on other factors. clarified.

The teams participating in the European Wonder League were as follows:

England

**-**Manchester United

– Liverpool

– Manchester City

– Chelsea

– Arsenal

– Tottenham Hotspur

Spain

– Real Madrid

– Barcelona

– Atlético Madrid

Italy

-Juventus

– Inter

– Milan

Plans for the league are thought to have begun in 2009 when Real Madrid president Florentino Perez said the Champions League, Europe’s premier cup competition now run by UEFA, was “outdated and problematic” and was “an obstacle to clubs leaving the league”. . grow their business and improve infrastructure’.

The idea of ​​the Great League was for 12 clubs to leave the Champions League rivalry and UEFA behind and run their own elite competitions.

English clubs were key players in Superior League plans

What was the reaction?

The response to the offers really depended on which country you were listening to. Confusion in England. Not only did the broad mass of football fans find the concept repulsive, but fans of the particular clubs involved felt a sense of betrayal and shame that their club, like ours, was spearheading a project that destroyed the English football pyramid. We’ve known for over 125 years.

Despite the Covid-19 restrictions still in place in the UK, the announcement of the plan has sparked massive protests and, in some cases, riots from fans. Manchester United fans, who currently dislike the Glazer family of American owners, occupied the pitch to protest ahead of a league game against Liverpool. The actions caused the match to be postponed and sparked great debate over whether the club owners should sell the club.

Fans in England did not favor the Superior League

After the football world plunged into chaos for 48 hours, the English clubs involved finally listened. By 23.30 on April 23, 2021, all six clubs have withdrawn from the project. Fans took this as a big win for how strong their voices can be on these issues.

How does the Great League look now?

In Spain and Italy there was and still is the attitude that this was a chance to catch up with the income levels of the Premier League. As we recently reported, the Premier League is the most popular league in world football. It attracts an average global audience of over 3.5 billion, which is over a billion each year than La Liga, which has the next best numbers. Signing up for the Superior League could see these clubs front pockets of up to €1 billion just to enter, which would have been a huge boost to their finances and would have made things a fairer playing field from their point of view. As a result, the Ultimate League isn’t technically completely dead.

“I think The Great League is in a sense a zombie league that isn’t quite dead, but is staggering about looking for something new to get its teeth on,” said Raphael Honigstein, European football writer for The Athletic.

“But right now I don’t feel a fully alive and real threat. This is because the English clubs that were part of the original format are no longer interested. The German sides have never been a part of it for political reasons. The French clubs and certainly PSG have not been a part of it. And that’s it. “So it has no structure. There is no revenue model attached to it, no reliable TV partner available. So all the whims and fallout from the beginning make that proposition impossible at the moment.”

Even though English clubs have withdrawn from the Great League project and promised never to return, Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus are still committed to the project.

Juventus is one of the clubs still involved.

This is because they do not think that UEFA, which organizes the Champions League and sets strict financial rules to be able to play in their matches, is treating them fairly. These are the rules that Barcelona and Juventus are trying to find a loophole, but their relations with UEFA are not in good shape.

As we mentioned before, the idea of ​​the Great League was to leave the Champions League behind. But Juventus, Madrid and Barcelona still need the income their clubs get from participating in the UEFA Champions League, as the Great League cannot progress without the participation of English clubs. On the other hand, the Champions League would not be the same without these clubs. After all, Real Madrid holds a record number of titles in this competition. Therefore, UEFA and these three clubs need to find a way to live together.

So what could be next for the Superior League project? It is unlikely to happen as the influence of English clubs is so significant. However, while other European giants are still trying to push the issue, it is not possible to say for a while whether the problem will actually disappear.

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