Manchester United has issued a statement to reiterate their dedication to taking part in UEFA tournaments, in light of the latest developments regarding the restructured European Super League. The European Court of Justice has declared the involvement of UEFA and FIFA in the initial Super League proposal in April 2021 as illegal. Consequently, the proponents of the breakaway league, A22, have presented an amended plan for a fresh competition consisting of three leagues and 64 teams, with admission based on sporting achievement rather than exclusivity.
On their official website, Manchester United has reaffirmed their unwavering stance, ensuring their continued active involvement in UEFA competitions. Furthermore, they conveyed their dedication to fostering a constructive partnership with UEFA, the Premier League, and other clubs via the ECA to further advance European football.
Initially, Manchester United, along with Liverpool, Chelsea, Tottenham, Manchester City, and Arsenal, were amongst the six Premier League clubs that agreed to join the Super League project. However, they later pulled out due to the strong negative response from fans. The original proposal encompassed a total of 12 clubs, including Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, and Real Madrid from Spain, as well as Juventus, AC Milan, and Inter from Italy. Barcelona expressed their contentment with the court’s ruling and emphasized that it creates an opportunity for a fresh and superior football tournament in Europe. They view it as a challenge to the football world’s monopoly and intend to kickstart new conversations about the future direction of European competitions. Real Madrid also celebrated the decision as a pivotal moment in the history of football and sports in general.
In their statement, Atletico Madrid emphasized that the resolution concerning the guidelines for granting permission for other competitions relates to obsolete UEFA regulations that were already modified in June 2022. The focus was put on the strong collaboration between the European Club Association (ECA) and UEFA, which grants clubs the ability to influence sponsorship and TV rights, distribution of revenue, and the formats of competitions. It was also noted that, apart from Real Madrid and Barcelona, the wider European football community is not in favor of the European Super League.
Jan Christian Dreesen, the CEO of FC Bayern and Vice-Chairman of the ECA, expressed that the verdict does not alter FC Bayern’s stance that a Super League would undermine the significance of domestic leagues and the framework of European football. He stressed the dedication of the club towards participating in the Bundesliga and European club tournaments organized by UEFA.
Internazionale restated their stance that the prosperity of European football in the long run can only be guaranteed by clubs cooperating together through the ECA, in a partnership and collaboration with UEFA and FIFA. They maintain their allegiance to the principles of the European Sports Model and working alongside other clubs to uphold those principles.
In response to A22’s fresh suggestions for a restructured European Super League, UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin declared that “football cannot be bought or sold.” He voiced his skepticism regarding the new proposals and affirmed that UEFA will not make any attempts to impede them. In a mocking tone, he remarked on A22’s presentation, asserting that it is even more restrictive than the previous 2021 proposition, which was unanimously dismissed.