Pep Guardiola, Marcus Rashford and UK prime minister Boris Johnson are just a few of the latest key figures to slam the European Super League plans.
[ MORE: How to watch PL in the USA ]
Jurgen Klopp, James Milner, Patrick Bamford and Marcelo Bielsa all hit out against the plan before and after Liverpool’s 1-1 draw at Leeds United on Monday and there is a growing sense that the Super League can be stopped.
Since then the 14 Premier League clubs not in the Super League have unanimously voted to reject the plans and the PL is looking into sanctions against the ‘big six’ clubs.
The 12 Super League founding members (AC Milan, Arsenal, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, Chelsea, Inter Milan, Juventus, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Real Madrid and Tottenham) have reportedly signed a 23-year contract to set up the league which would replace the UEFA Champions League in midweek.
There would be 12-15 teams who are guaranteed to play in the competition each and every season, while five others would be invited each season to make it up to 20 teams.
Speaking to reporters about Man City being one of the 12 founding members of the breakaway tournament, Guardiola didn’t shy away from being critical.
“I can give my opinion of what I know today but I do not know any more – that is the reality. It is not a sport where the relation between effort and success does not exist. It is not a sport where success is already guaranteed, it is not a sport where it doesn’t matter when you lose,” Guardiola said.
[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]
“But at the moment it is only a statement, and no more than that. I would love the president of this committee to explain to the whole world why they took the decision. I don’t know why these specific teams have been selected and going to play this competition. I have said many times, I want the best and strongest competition possible, especially the Premier League And it’s not fair if one team fights to make it to the top and then cannot qualify because success is just guaranteed for a few clubs.”
Guardiola went on to ask the clubs who have signed up to the Super League to come out and explain the decision and why certain teams like Ajax, who are four-time European Champions, weren’t invited to the competition.
So far the owners of the 12 clubs have remained silent, but cracks are reportedly appearing and some PL clubs are starting to look at how they can back out.
Until then, Guardiola, Klopp and other managers and players have been left to try and answer the many, many questions as their club owners aren’t saying anything.
Rashford, Johnson speak out
Guardiola isn’t the only one speaking out against these plans.
Marcus Rashford, a hero at Manchester United and throughout England for his play on the pitch and activism off it, simply posted a photo on his social media with a famous quote from legendary United manager Sir Matt Busby.
“Football is nothing without fans,” said the photo.
As for UK prime minister Boris Johnson, he met with Premier League officials before their meeting with the 14 clubs who aren’t part of the Super League, and he told the PL he would back them to stop the Super League and could help to put government legislation in place to do so.
“Earlier Oliver Dowden (Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport) and I met with representatives from the FA, Premier League and football fan groups to discuss action against the proposed European Super League. No action is off the table and we are exploring every possibility to ensure these proposals are stopped,” Johnson said.
UK prime minister Boris Johnson, during a national COVID-19 briefing, said this on #EuropeanSuperLeague.
"We don't support it. It is not in the interest of fans and football. How can it be right that a 'cartel' stops clubs competing against each other?"pic.twitter.com/ws6k7FDDsl
— Joe Prince-Wright (@JPW_NBCSports) April 20, 2021
It was also reported that Johnson told the group in the meeting: “We should drop a legislative bomb to stop it – and we should do it now.”
All in all, the Super League has taken an almighty hammering in the last few days.
And unless something drastic changes that will be the case in the days, weeks, months and years ahead.