A recent announcement regarding the proposal of a Super League in European soccer has sparked global outrage and may forever change the way the game is both played and experienced. The 12 clubs confirmed as founding members, which include England’s traditional “Big 6” as well as the three top clubs in Italy and Spain,
announced that they plan to form a “Super League” which would have a tremendous impact on both domestic and international tournaments.
Traditionally, high-level European club tournaments such as the Champions League and Europa League require qualification that is obtained by performing at the top of a domestic league. The proposed Super League would instead have members play each other on a consistent basis, eliminating the ability for teams to work their way up and qualify. This is completely contradictory to how European tournaments and domestic leagues currently function where teams at the bottom of the table at the end of the season are relegated to a lower league and then must fight for promotion back up to the top league. It could also eliminate how money is transferred between leagues where the top clubs help fund the smaller clubs to continue the longstanding tradition of supporting grassroots efforts to expand the game.
The majority of soccer’s governing bodies have proposed sanctions that would be put on players and clubs who compete in this proposed Super League. UEFA and FIFA, which oversee major tournaments, have begun to discuss sanctions against participating players on both a domestic and international scale.
Fans, commentators, and even managers and players across Europe and the globe have come out against the Super League because at the heart of it, all they know that it is fueled by greed, and this proposal disregards not only the players but the fans who have supported these clubs for centuries. These clubs are integral parts of their communities who have provided help and assistance to people, especially during the pandemic, and this proposal completely undermines the local fabric of the sport.
The timing of the announcement of this league is also cause for outrage when hundreds of lower league clubs have suffered financial hardships from the pandemic. Since its inception, soccer has been known as the “working man’s game” and in many ways, this new proposed league would take away its heart and soul in exchange for enhanced profits for the so-called “top” teams.
The love of the game has provided a sense of camaraderie and belonging for people, especially in dark times that we constantly find ourselves in. And now more than ever it’s important that soccer fans come together, regardless of allegiances, to fight for the sport that has given us so much. In any sense, soccer fans, including myself, around the globe will sit, wait and hope this attempt to destroy the beautiful game we all know and love will not go through.