Barcelona president Joan Laporta on Thursday said plans to create a European Super League were “progressing” and expected a favourable court ruling for the breakaway competition fiercely opposed by UEFA and FIFA.
European football was rocked in 2021 by an attempt by 12 clubs to set up a Super League, but after a backlash by fans and governments, most pulled out of the project.
Barcelona, Real Madrid and Juventus have continued to insist on a potential Super League, despite disapproval from various quarters.
“The Super League is progressing” and will be “more sustainable” for clubs, Laporta told a press conference.
A22 Sports Management, the company promoting the Super League, published its 10 principles for the competition and laid out its position in several European newspapers.
These include the creation of an “open” competition made up of multiple divisions and between 60 and 80 teams.
“Participating clubs should remain fully committed to domestic tournaments as they do today,” A22 added, after critics said the Super League sought to rival national leagues and UEFA-organised club competitions.
“What we want is that dialogue with UEFA isn’t broken and is harmonised with national leagues. I think that through dialogue we will finally reach a good deal with UEFA,” Laporta added on Thursday.
The Super League will need to cooperate with UEFA but also “be mainly governed by the clubs”, the Spaniard added.
A lawsuit has been launched against UEFA and FIFA at the European Court of Justice, accusing the governing bodies of abusing their power by threatening to expel clubs and players interested in joining a Super League.
Laporta said he expected the European Union’s top court to provide a ruling in April and that the Super League’s promoters would be able to organise the competition.
The court’s advocate general, whose opinions are often followed by judges, provided a first ruling favourable to UEFA in December.
The European Club Association repeated its longstanding opposition to the project in a statement, saying A22’s ideas were “another deliberately distorted and misleading attempt” to destabilise ongoing work between football’s stakeholders to move the game forward.
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez, who presented the initial Super League project in 2021, said in October last year that football was “sick” and that a European Super League could revive it.
The “big six” Premier League clubs -- Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham -- were part of the initial 12 clubs that proposed the breakaway project.
However they pulled out, pledging not to join the project again, and Laporta has sukne55ggested the Super League could operate as a rival to the English top flight.
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