UEFA have moved to sanction the 12 breakaway clubs who set up the European Super League as the bitter row continues.
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9 of the 12 clubs backed out of the competition around 72 hours after it was announced amid uproar from fans, politicians and just about everyone in-between.
But three are still hanging on and face a potential ban from UEFA competitions.
The nine clubs (Arsenal, Atletico Madrid, AC Milan, Chelsea, Inter Milan, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham) who backed out have accepted a fine by UEFA, totalling $18.2 million between them, and agreed that 5 percent of their UEFA competition income will be held back.
Those clubs also agreed to rejoin the European Club Association and have agreed to terms from UEFA that they will not join another breakaway league, otherwise they will be hammered with a huge fine of $121 million each, and half of that amount if they break any other rules of the agreement with UEFA.
What have the three remaining clubs said?
However, Real Madrid, Juventus and Barcelona remain committed to the Super League and have issued a joint-statement as they heavily criticized UEFA who are now threatening to sanction those three clubs further, with bans from their competitions widely expected.
“The founding clubs have suffered, and continue to suffer, unacceptable third-party pressures, threats, and offenses to abandon the project and therefore desist from their right and duty to provide solutions to the football ecosystem via concrete proposals and constructive dialogue,” they said.
Real, Barca and Juve also hit out at the 9 clubs who backed out of the Super League, and insisted they planned this project for the financial benefit of the entire soccer ecosystem and to safeguard its future.
They also admitted they are ‘fully aware of the diversity of reactions to the Super League initiative and, consequently, of the need to reflect on the reasons for some of them’ but remain committed to the Super League project and want to work with UEFA and FIFA to make it happen.
“We regret to see that our friends and founding partners of the Super League project have now found themselves in such inconsistent and contradictory position when signing a number of commitments to UEFA yesterday,” the statement said.
“However, given that the material issues that led the 12 founding clubs to announce the Super League weeks ago have not gone away, we reiterate that, to honor our history, to comply with our obligations towards our stakeholders and fans, for the good of football and for the financial sustainability of the sector, we have the duty to act in a responsible manner and persevere in the pursuit of adequate solutions, despite the unacceptable and ongoing pressures and threats received from UEFA.
“Mostly, we reiterate to FIFA, UEFA and all football stakeholders, as we have done on several occasions since the announcement of the Super League, our commitment and firm will to discuss, with respect and without intolerable pressure and in accordance with the rule of law, the most appropriate solutions for the sustainability of the whole football family.”
What will happen to Juventus, Real Madrid and Barcelona?
If they carry on with this stance, UEFA will ban them from their competitions.
Perhaps for many years.
They also face hefty fines, that is a given, but the way their leaders (Florentino Perez, Joan Laporta and Andrea Agnelli) continue to push on despite the other nine members backing out is quite bizarre.
Perez and Agnelli in particular were the masterminds (if you want to call them that…) behind the Super League idea and are fighting to the bitter end to make it a reality.
It isn’t going to happen, at least not anytime soon, so before they cause more damage to the players, coaches and fans of their clubs, they should now move on and accept UEFA’s more lenient sanctions before it’s too late.