Manchester United have distanced themselves from talks about a possible European Super League after FIFA threats to ban those involved from international competitions.
After meeting with the six world confederations, FIFA issued a joint statement warning that all clubs and players involved in a separatist Super League would no longer be allowed to participate in the World Cup, European Champions, Copa America or any other tournament.
The threat has effectively killed any discussion of a Super League yet. According to the Daily Mail, this is done enough to scare United, who have taken a step back from the negotiating table.
The plan, which is led by Real Madrid, Juventus and former Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu, promised to pay any team involved the whopping £ 310million just for their stake, with $ 213million. extra pounds up for grabs.
United were due to be invited alongside Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City and Tottenham, but the threat from FIFA is likely to hurt support for the proposal.
The next step in this never-ending game of chess is likely to come from UEFA, which are expected to soon announce plans to reform the Champions League after 2024, which shares common ground with the so-called Super League.
UEFA’s proposal will revolve around a 36-team league to replace the group stages, with teams facing ten opponents based on seed. The top 12 teams would then qualify for the round of 16, which should remain intact.
The main difference between this and the Super League is that teams should qualify for the UEFA competition through their domestic leagues, rather than being entitled to a place in the competition because of their bank balances.
There can be no assurance that UEFA’s plan will be accepted by either Real or Juventus, who will have to decide whether to play the game or opt out and create their own tournament.
FIFA has strongly condemned the idea of teams leaving the current structure, and their threats have already started to frighten some clubs, but as we all know in football, sometimes money speaks.
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