April 18, 2021, a day that will live in infamy for football supporters around the world.
The day started with a report, via New York Times, that a dozen clubs intend to break away from tradition and form a European Super League in what can only be seen as a vehicle to increase revenue exponentially. Later in the evening, the founding members confirmed the report by publishing press releases, and a website for the Super League was launched. Things got real, real fast.
The 12 founding members include AC Milan, Arsenal FC, Atlético Madrid, Chelsea FC, FC Barcelona, FC Internazionale Milano, Juventus FC, Liverpool FC, Manchester City, Manchester United, Real Madrid CF, and Tottenham Hotspur.
Paris Saint-Germain is not a founding member and as of publication, the club has no intention of joining the Super League. The same goes for FC Bayern Munich and a few others (although that might change soon).
Now, there are several reasons to point to as to why PSG isn’t a member of the league. The club’s president, Nasser Al-Khelaifi, is a member of UEFA’s executive board, and Qatar is set to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup with beIN Sports holding the television rights, so you can see a conflict of interest there. That’s not to say PSG won’t be forced into joining at some point, but for now, they’re seen as the savior of football and I’m not mad about that at all.
No surprise that the German clubs didn’t go for this Super League nonsense. Fan-owned. They respect their supporters.
But surprise of the day goes to PSG for not committing to it either. Bravo! Didn’t see that coming. 👏🏻
— Spencer (@SpencerOwen) April 18, 2021
In the midst of the breaking news, UEFA released an official statement in response to the formation of the Super League and they didn’t hold back at all in regards to what they will do in retaliation:
UEFA released an official statement about the Super League. pic.twitter.com/p60818npoc
— Champions League on CBS Sports (@UCLonCBSSports) April 18, 2021
Basically, UEFA is threatening to ban all 12 clubs from their domestic leagues, European competition (Champions League and Europa League), and international games. They’re even going as far as to threaten to ban players on these 12 teams from playing for their national teams!
So, what does this mean for PSG other than the fact they’re not currently in the Super League? Well, let’s look at the Champions League. The three other teams in the semi-finals are all founding members. If UEFA is saying that those clubs will be banned from European competition, that leads one to believe that PSG will be the last one’s standing and thus, should be awarded the Champions League trophy. It’s hard to imagine all of this happening and then Real Madrid, Chelsea, and Manchester City all playing for a trophy that is awarded after a UEFA competition.
I’m sure we’ll hear much more this week before the semi-finals of the Champions League kicks off, but if PSG were to be awarded the title by default, I for one will celebrate it. PSG survived the group of death with Manchester United and RB Leipzig, knocked out Barcelona, and the defending champions Bayern Munich. Not an ideal way to be crowned champions, but it would be a nice reward for not blowing up the entire football system.
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