Thursday December 7, 2023

The European Super League Isn’t Done Yet

Premier League/Design: Alex Brooks
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When it comes to the abandoned European Super League, it’s all over but the shouting — and maybe some consequences.

The Premier League announced new rules with details committing club owners to the “core principles of the Premier League” and sanctions if those rules are breached. 

Last week, England’s Football Association launched an inquiry into the failed Super League, requiring the six Premier League clubs involved — Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City, and Tottenham — to provide evidence of their participation.

In January, the global soccer federations said that any potential breakaway competition would not be recognized as legitimate, but the teams joining were lured by a $361 million gift, plus a shared pool of $4.2 billion in infrastructure improvements.

The initial sequence of events seemed brief, but who knows how long it will drag out?

  • April 18: 12 teams sign up for the league — JPMorgan Chase pledges roughly $4 billion to back it.
  • April 19: Outrage leads to executive resignations; U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson says the government will prevent the league.
  • April 20: Four teams release statements confirming their withdrawal from the league, followed by others.
  • April 24: Florentino Perez, president of Real Madrid, says the 12 clubs have “binding contracts” and “cannot leave,” and that the ESL or something similar will still be created.

Whether or not the league happens, other issues are coming to light.

Manchester United fans are protesting the club’s American owners, the Glazer family, who also own the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The family’s asking price to sell is $5.6 billion.

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