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Explained | What is new European Super League that has split major football clubs? All you need to know

In a historic verdict, the European Court of Justice ruled in favour of the new Super League idea on December 21 which resulted in a major shuffle and split in top football clubs. Real Madrid and Barcelona are among the top clubs in favour of Super League but face stern opposition from EPL teams.

Written By: Sumeet Kavthale @sumeetkavthale New Delhi Published on: December 22, 2023 19:07 IST
Manchester City's trophy cabinet in the 2022-23 season
Image Source : GETTY Manchester City's trophy cabinet in the 2022-23 season

European football is witnessing major turmoil since the European Court of Justice's verdict in favour of the new Super League on Thursday, December 21. The top court said that UEFA and FIFA's opposition to the Super League breached EU laws, paving the way for a new league shortly.

Top Spanish football teams Real Madrid and Barcelona welcomed the court's ruling as their management continue to push for a new European Super League (ESL) but the rest of Europe has united against the idea. Popular clubs PSG, Bayern Munich and both Manchester sides have already issued statements to pledge their loyalty to UEFA.

So, what is this new Super League and why it is causing major uncertainty in European football?

What is the European Super League?

In April 2021, 12 football giants came together and announced their plans to leave UEFA and form a new football league. All major teams from Europe's top-five domestic leagues English Premier League, La Liga (Spain), Serie A (Italy), Bundesliga (Germany) and Ligue 1 (France) showed interest in forming a new league.

But all 12 teams faced major opposition from the loyal fans who protested for weeks and forced clubs to abandon the idea. Premier League's 'top-six' clubs were first to leave the group followed by PSG and Bayern Munich. Serie A giants Juventus also quit their effort but Real Madrid and Barcelona remained firm in their efforts.

Now the Justice Department has cleared the way for the Super League, both Real Madrid and Barcelona are looking to take the lead and have already cleared their intentions.

"First of all, that European club football is not and will never be a monopoly again," Real Madrid President Florentino Perez said. "And secondly, that from today the clubs will be the owners of their destiny. Clubs see fully recognized our right to propose and promote European competitions that modernize our sport and attract fans from all over the world. In short, today the Europe of freedoms has triumphed again and today soccer and its fans have also triumphed."

Why are major clubs split over the new European Super League?

A22 Sports Management company, the Super League backers, proposed a three-league, 64-club format for the Super League after the court's verdict on Thursday. This league will replace the UEFA Champions League (UCL), the biggest and most popular sporting league in the world, but will it become a reality?

Both Real Madrid (record 14 UCL titles) and Barcelona have publicly entertained the idea but stand alone so far. The reason behind the other team's hesitation is due to lack of support from the fans. 

Fans displayed wide protests outside stadiums when the Super League idea emerged in 2021. Football is nothing without fans and clubs clearly need their support before making any major more. UCL has been the top football league in Europe since its inception in 1952 and fans want their favourite clubs to stay loyal to it to preserve emotions and history.


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