The European Super League, a breakaway competition that would feature an exclusive group of the biggest clubs in Europe has been agreed in principle and Barcelona are one of the 12 clubs to have already signed up, according to a report in the New York Times.
The 12 teams are: Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atlético Madrid from Spain; Juventus, AC Milan and Inter Milan from Italy; and England’s “Big Six” of Manchester United, Liverpool, Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur. An announcement on the Super League could come as soon as this Sunday, according to the report.
The announcement would overshadow UEFA’s plans of a massive reform of the Champions League structure beginning in 2024 — which is expected to be announced on Monday — but the biggest clubs in the continent feel they don’t have enough power within UEFA and have accelerated the talks on breaking away from the current football setup.
Each club would receive 350 million euros to join the Super League according to the report, and the competition would take place in midweek as the teams would play their own version of the Champions League.
The plan is to have 16 permanent Super League members with four other teams invited annually from the European leagues. The 20 teams would be split into two groups of 10, with the top four teams from each group advancing to the knockout stages, with a one-game final taking place on a Saturday or Sunday.
The teams joining the Super League do not plan to leave their domestic leagues, but they could be banned from competing in those if UEFA and FIFA force the leagues to do so as a response to the movement.
Barcelona — as well as the two other Spanish teams — would need approval from their Sócios to join the Super League as they are not privately owned clubs, and the members would certainly need some convincing.
The beginning of the end of football as we know it could be upon us. The next few days should be fascinating.