If you haven't been living under a rock over the past 2 weeks you will have seen and heard about the despicable plans of the European Super League aimed to rival UEFA's Champions League and how the Premier League's "Big 6" were at the forefront as founding members.
Here at ISM we pride ourselves on integrity and support of clients and partners under our management, this has been shown be the complete opposite viewpoint of all owners of the clubs who signed the contract of intent and bound themselves into a breakaway league system that undermines not only football heritage, but natural competition in which 12 teams enter a league without promotion or relegation.
Real Madrid's owner Florentino Perez was the mastermind behind it all, in which his aim was to create the European Super League in an attempt to ‘save football’ amid the financial crisis the Coronavirus pandemic has put football clubs around the world under. This has been a desire of his for years and it has only been a matter of when rather than IF it would be announced.
Through private zoom meetings and phone calls, Perez was able to convince multiple owners from European powerhouses across top leagues such as the English Premier League, Italian Serie A and Spanish La Liga. Nine Teams signed a letter of intent to join this league = Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Tottenham Hotspur, Juventus, Real Madrid and Barcelona.
After the announcement the uproar of disapproval was ever-present around the world, lead by the English football fans who felt their clubs heritage and history was under attack by the greed filled owners of the self-proclaimed "Big Six" who were looking to capitalize on the financial backing of American investment banking company JP Morgan who planned to invest $6 Billion spread across the proposed 12 teams within the league that would have given a £400 Million paycheck to each club each year.
Not only was their claims of greed from a financial standpoint, there was also the questions of how it would be competitively fair for these 6 clubs to be able to attain the added cash injection which would in turn mean they would be able to sign higher caliber players and improvements on facilities. Which would leave fellow teams in the dust and allow them to dominate the league for years to come, therefore ruining the chances of fairytale stories such as Leicester City's 2016 Premier League win.
When football needed a hero to squash and destroy this plan that would have ruined football as fans knew it, an unlikely figure arose in Gary Neville. Gary used his platform of being a Sky Sports pundit to voice his very emotional opinion that was shared by millions around the country/world. This allowed for communication and severe backlash to be heard and for fans to realise the power that they hold as the biggest influence over all clubs. They did this by organising peaceful protests speaking out against their owners who had complete disregard to the clubs core values.
With the complete footballing world voicing their distaste for the shambolic actions in creating this league it was bound for instant failure. More so when it was discovered that both German giants Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund declined the offer to join as well as Paris Saint-Germain, with their own views that it would do more harm than good to the future of football, it worsens the impact of the greed fueled actions of others to capitalise on the economic struggles everyone has faced due to Covid-19.
It may come as no surprise that clubs were in an instant state of regret with Chelsea and Manchester City leading the way in U-turning and formally requesting to leave and all other English clubs following suit. Players such as James Milner and Ilkay Gundogan speaking out on the league and also challenging the new Champions League format introduced too. Jordan Henderson called a captains meeting with all Premier League clubs to discuss the future and collect opinions.
In summary, it all begs the question of where do we go from here? Will there be punishments from organisations such as the FA and UEFA for teams involved? How severe could the consequences be? Will owners be able to move forward and rebuild the relationships that have been ravaged? Over the coming months is when we will really see the implications of the choices made and how football will change as a result of this seismic dilemma.
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