The best football clubs in Europe have signed up for a Super League getaway
Many of the richest football clubs in Europe have joined getaway “Super League” a competition that would mark the biggest transformation of the game in decades.
A maximum of 12 clubs have signed up to a $ 6 billion debt financing plan funded by JPMorgan to launch a new tournament that will replace the Champions League, now the main annual club competition on the continent.
According to people familiar with the debate, Real Madrid and FC Barcelona in Spain are among those willing to take part in the breakaway competition; Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea in England; and Italian Juventus, AC Milan and Inter Milan. These clubs refused or did not respond to a request for response.
The new leagues, according to documents seen by the FT, would involve 20 clubs with 15 “permanent members”, which means they cannot be relegated and will not have to qualify for strong performances in national league competitions.
The founding members would be allocated between € 100 million and € 350 million each and would continue to play in their national competitions such as the English Premier League and the Spanish La Liga. With a projected revenue of 4 billion euros through media and sponsorship sales, the clubs would receive a fixed annual payment of 264 million euros. JPMorgan does not wish to comment.
Among the clubs that have not yet registered are Paris Saint-Germain in France and Bayern Munich in Germany, among the richest in Europe, according to people close to the debates.
A proclamation about the Super League is designed to counter the alternative plan for the radical transformation of the Champions League, which is led by Uefa, the governing body of European football.
At Monday’s annual conference, Uefa will adopt a radical new format for its competition, which includes 100 more games each season and more money-making links between top teams.
The movement met with the European Clubs Association, an organization that represents the interests of more than 200 teams, and Andrea Agnelli, president of Juventus, last week to discuss proposed reforms to the continent’s club championships.
The ECA agreed to allow Uefa to continue with the proposed format changes, but it did widespread grief with the plan that the major clubs wanted to provide a greater guarantee about a new joint venture that would control all media and all protection rights for European club competitions.
Uefa’s attempt to contact Agnelli over the weekend has failed as Juventus have agreed to join the Super League, according to people close to the discussions. However, there have been reports of other important power brokers, such as league leader Javier Tebas, who is among the football officials who want to block the escape plan.
The major clubs that have had major revenue shortfalls in the pandemic are excited about the new competition, which they believe will guarantee an income from European matches every season. It can also include aspects of cost control, such as potential salary limits and spending limits.
The competition would be similar to the “closed” structure of the North American sports league, where franchise owners have reliable performance and team valuation is constantly rising over time.
But the plan breaks with the pyramid structure of the European game, so even the smallest teams can get the biggest trophies through strong performances on the field.
Uefa does not want to comment.