BEVERLY HILLS, April 20, (THEWILL) – In the rapidly escalating aftermath of the decision by some of Europe’s biggest clubs to create a breakaway League is their own, which the 12 founding members have christened the “new European Super League”, there are now clear threats to the chances of a handful of these clubs in the current football season, which only yesterday did not exist.
THEWILL is following reports that hold that the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) may expel clubs that have progressed to the semi-finals of its continental competition but who were part of the membership of the new League like Manchester City and Chelsea in the Champions League and Manchester United and Arsenal from the Europa League.
As the Super League proposes to challenge the Champions League based on the initial format declared by the founding members, UEFA has clearly expressed its determination to not tolerate the gumption of the clubs who formed the new League. This was evidenced by the setting up of an Executive Committee meeting to be held soonest where the European football governing body will discuss their options.
As reported by THEWILL, Aleksander Ceferin, UEFA’s president, had fumed over the Super League formation while expressing the Union’s commitment to handle the outcome with decisive actions for which the meeting was called to examine their options and stop those clubs involved from participating in European competitions with immediate effect. Their players will also be affected as they will not be allowed to play for their national teams across Europe, as a consequence.
Some of the worldwide reactions have come from Football Associations across the European football world, with all of them condemning the move outright. For instance, the Danish FA chairman Jesper Moller reacted by saying that one of the considerations in their meeting will be to immediately expel from European competitions any of the 12 clubs remaining.
“[Real Madrid, Manchester City and Chelsea] are going out, and I expect that to happen on Friday. And then you have to see how to finish the Champions League.
“There must be one extraordinary executive committee meeting on Friday. I have an expectation that the 12 clubs will be thrown out.”
Of the 12 involved clubs, AC Milan, Arsenal, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, Chelsea, Inter Milan, Juventus, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Real Madrid, Tottenham Hotspur, five have reached the semifinals of UEFA’s marquee competitions for this season.
English Premier League side Chelsea are due to play La Liga champions Real Madrid in one of the UEFA Champions League semi finals, while another EPL side Manchester City are set to face Ligue 1 team Paris Saint-Germain. Of all these only PSG have not joined the new League. Therefore, any expulsions will result in the French side being crowned champions.
In the UEFA Europa League, EPL club Arsenal face La Liga side Villarreal while another English club Manchester United face the Italian side Roma in the semifinals. If expelling Super League members becomes the path forward, the Europa title could be decided by a clash between Villarreal and Roma, the only two of the four who are not part of the new League.
It all boils down to what decision UEFA takes coming out of the Executive Committee meeting. With the fierce reactions from the European football body so far, the possibility is high on the desire of its members to set a deterrent precedent to clearly demonstrate that it in no way tolerates such a move by the clubs because they believe themselves above censure.
That may be at the basis of what UEFA will conclude to be the path forward. It is clear, however, that this has thrown the entire football structure into unwarranted crisis, which could have been avoided at a time when the game is still trying to recover from the issues weighing it down from the pandemic