Soccer’s proposed European Super League is on the ropes in its latest return attempt.
On Thursday, the Court of Justice of the European Union published an opinion from advocate general Athanasios Rantos rejecting ESL’s claim that FIFA and UEFA engaged in anticompetitive behavior when they said that any participating clubs would be “expelled” from competitions organized by the federations.
The Court’s final ruling on the matter is expected in early 2023.
The Super League saga began in April 2021 when 12 clubs announced they would form a breakaway European soccer league to compete with Champions League. All but three — Barcelona, Juventus, and Real Madrid — of the clubs abandoned the idea within days after massive public backlash.
The remnants of ESL struck back with the lawsuit in July — but Thursday’s opinion signals that CJEU will likely side with FIFA and UEFA, limiting the appeal of clubs choosing to join the offshoot league.
UEFA released a statement on Rantos’ opinion, saying, “UEFA warmly welcomes today’s unequivocal Opinion recommending a ruling of the CJEU in support of our central mission to govern European football, protect the pyramid and develop the game across Europe.”
Assuming the Court holds true when the ruling is released next year, it could finally spell the end for ESL, which hired Bernd Reichart as CEO in October.