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  • Writer's pictureDaniel Bench

The Rise and Fall of the UEFA SuperLeague

One of the greatest threats to domestic European soccer rose and fell in a short 48 hours. However, the idea is still around and will probably resurface in about two years.

For this matter to be fully understood, you need to have some background knowledge of European football (American soccer). Any club in Europe has two major competitions: domestic leagues and European tournaments. For example, teams like Liverpool and Chelsea play in the Premier League against other teams in England for a 38 game season. Bayern Munich plays against German clubs in the Bundesliga, Barcelona plays against Spanish teams in La Liga, and so forth. The strongest teams in the domestic leagues have the best chance of qualifying for European competition. In a format similar to the World Cup, the Champions League, Europe's premier competition, contains 32 clubs from across Europe. Teams compete in two-legged “fixes” after a group stage in which the top two teams from eight groups of four qualify for the knockout stages. Then, a final match is played to decide the best team in Europe.

Despite the large sum of money these clubs already make, many of them are in debt. The global pandemic has really highlighted how these football clubs are suffering. The biggest clubs faced a problem with short-term debt commitment and the drying up of revenue from live streams. A major reason for the UEFA Super League was the money it would bring in. Champions League does bring in a lot of money; however, so much more money could be brought in. Imagine the top teams in Europe competing every week instead of twice every two or three months. The television viewership would increase drastically, bringing in ten times more money than usual.

The goal of these 12 teams was to add security to a volatile and competitive economic situation. As seen in the NFL and the NBA, revenue sharing and a closed format stabilize the profits a team can make. For European soccer clubs, a bad season can cost the club millions. With more and more Americans occupying European football clubs, they are bringing the idea of a league similar to the NBA and NFL solely for the purpose of making money, and this did not sit well with the fans.

The UEFA Super League was intended to be a “Super League” of the 12 “best” teams in Europe. The UEFA Super League was meant to be a separate league from all domestic leagues and tournaments. This meant that Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea, Liverpool, Tottenham, Arsenal, Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, Inter Milan, A.C Milan and Juventus would play in one league all together. So, these teams could not participate in their previous leagues or tournaments. This also meant that these clubs cannot be associated with FIFA.

What’s so frustrating about this situation is that these big teams were handed a position in this league, especially Tottenham and Arsenal. Tottenham and Arsenal have been struggling these past few years. Tottenham also has not ever won a trophy! By giving 12 teams permanent spots in a league, it completely destroys competition. It also destroys the World Cup, European tournaments, and domestic leagues. The big money owners were tearing down a system of football created by the fans.

You might be confused as to why the Super League did not work out. That is because the fans were extremely angry and started to protest. Fans were breaking into stadiums and protesting outside them. They were telling owners to “sell the club” because of your “pure greed.” Fans also started boycotting their clubs. Some clubs were not happy with the Super League but did not want to be the odd ones out. Chelsea and Manchester City were the first to drop out of the league because they believed the switch was not right. As more and more protesting went on, teams were dropping like flies. Now, the Super League has been scrapped, but the idea will probably resurface soon, given the potential profits.


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