Manchester City was the first to exit the European Super League, a short statement confirming their intent to depart the vilified tournament helmed by executives at Real Madrid, Juventus, and Manchester United.
The statements (and apologies) have more profuse now that all Premier League clubs have joined the table leaders in declaring they’d exit the project, which would create a relegation-proof, high-money league for the founding clubs, which also included AC Milan, Inter Milan, Barcelona, and Atletico Madrid.
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Chelsea has yet to announce its withdrawal from the European Super League but was the first to have its exit widely reported in the press and just finished a 0-0 draw with Brighton. Man City’s announcement came hot on the heels of the Chelsea reports, while the remaining four PL sides made statements after the Chelsea game.
Who got it right and who got it wrong? Well Arsenal and Tottenham seem the most effusive in their sentiment, that’s for sure.
Below are the statements as they come in from the PL’s would-be ESL sides.
Arsenal: “We made a mistake and we apologize for it” (Full statement)
Arsenal’s board apologized for “accepting the invitation” to the Super League, saying it did not want the club to be “left behind” by the others.
“It was never our intention to cause such distress, however when the invitation to join the Super League came, while knowing there were no guarantees, we did not want to be left behind to ensure we protected Arsenal and its future. As a result of listening to you and the wider football community over recent days we are withdrawing from the proposed Super League. We made a mistake, and we apologize for it.”
Manchester United says it will work to find another solution (Full statement)
United was less apologetic in announcing its withdrawal.
“We have listened carefully to the reaction from our fans, the UK government and other key stakeholders. We remain committed to working with others across the football community to come up with sustainable solutions to the long-term challenges facing the game.”
Chelsea says it’s learned a lot in the last week (Full statement)
The Blues seem to feel caught off-guard altogether and seem to have made a pretty big decision in short order.
“Having joined the group late last week, we have now had time to consider the matter fully and have decided that our continued participation in these plans would not be in the best interests of the Club, our supporters or the wider football community.”
Liverpool “discontinues” involvement (Full statement)
Liverpool’s vibe is closer to United’s response than Arsenal’s apology.
“In recent days, the club has received representations from various key stakeholders, both internally and externally, and we would like to thank them for their valuable contributions.”
Tottenham “regrets anxiety caused” by Super League announcement (Full statement)
Here are the words of Tottenham Hotspur chairman Daniel Levy, who gets credit for putting his name out behind the plan and apology.
“We regret the anxiety and upset caused by the ESL proposal. We felt it was important that our club participated in the development of a possible new structure that sought to better ensure financial fair play and financial sustainability whilst delivering significantly increased support for the wider football pyramid.
“We believe that we should never stand still and that the sport should constantly review competitions and governance to ensure the game we all love continues to evolve and excite fans around the world. We should like to thank all those supporters who presented their considered opinions.”