‘Big Six’ among nine European Super League clubs to commit to UEFA competitions

Scarves of the Premier League's 'Big Six'
Scarves of the Premier League's 'Big Six' (PA Wire)
20:46pm, Fri 07 May 2021
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Nine of the original European Super League clubs – including the Premier League’s ‘Big Six’ – have declared their commitment to UEFA and its competitions at continental and domestic level.

However, the three who have not renounced the Super League – Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus – are set to face “appropriate action” under UEFA’s disciplinary process.

The 12 clubs announced themselves as founder members of the breakaway league on April 18, but within 72 hours it had fallen apart with the English clubs withdrawing after fan protests and Government pressure.

The clubs will make a combined 15million euro (just over £13m) goodwill contribution to benefit children’s and grassroots football across Europe.

They will also have five per cent of UEFA competition revenues withheld for one season. This money will be redistributed.

They face fines of 100m euros (almost £87m) each if they seek to join an unauthorised competition in the future, and a fine of half that if they breach any other terms of the declaration, UEFA said in a statement.

They will also rejoin the influential lobbying group the European Club Association.

A spokesperson for Manchester United confirmed the Glazer family would personally cover their club’s share of the goodwill money requested and the withheld funds.

It is expected that the amount the Glazers would be liable for is between five and 10 million euros.

The PA news agency understands Liverpool owners Fenway Sports Group, and not the club, will fund their contribution.

Aleksander Ceferin (PA Wire)

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin said: “I said at the UEFA Congress two weeks ago that it takes a strong organisation to admit making a mistake especially in these days of trial by social media. These clubs have done just that.

“In accepting their commitments and willingness to repair the disruption they caused, UEFA wants to put this chapter behind it and move forward in a positive spirit.

“The measures announced are significant, but none of the financial penalties will be retained by UEFA. They will all be reinvested into youth and grassroots football in local communities across Europe, including the UK.

“These clubs recognised their mistakes quickly and have taken action to demonstrate their contrition and future commitment to European football. The same cannot be said for the clubs that remain involved in the so-called ‘Super League’ and UEFA will deal with those clubs subsequently.”

On those clubs – Real, Barca and Juve – the tone was strikingly different in UEFA’s statement.

“UEFA has reserved all rights to take whatever action it deems appropriate against those clubs that have so far refused to renounce the so-called ‘Super League’,” the statement concluded.

“The matter will promptly be referred to the competent UEFA disciplinary bodies.”

The Football Association said it was “delighted” the six English clubs had committed to UEFA’s competitions.

It added in a statement: “The FA has an ongoing inquiry into the involved of the six English clubs and we have formally requested all relevant information and evidence regarding their participation. Once we have the required information, we will consider what appropriate steps to take.”

The ECA confirmed the return of the nine clubs in question but stopped short of providing its unqualified backing, saying in a statement that its executive board “will now decide upon arrangements with these clubs going forwards”.

The statement added: “The nine clubs have renounced the project, apologised for their actions and reaffirmed their commitments to engage with ECA and with the official structures of European football under the governance of UEFA.

“This decision comes following strong alignment between ECA and UEFA over recent days and weeks on how to manage the disruption caused by the ill-fated project.”

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