Liverpool are said to be one of the 12 founding members of the European Super League. All the clubs have reportedly signed the deal for the competition and have released individual statements as of 18th April. However, Liverpool boss, Jurgen Klopp had stated his view on the Super League last year while it was still in its speculative period.
Before we dig deep, let us have detailed information about what the Europen Super League is all about. This competition will comprise 20 teams once it starts. However, 12 teams that have registered so far, have been named as the founding members with a vacancy for 3 more. These 15 clubs will remain as permanent participants in the competition.
The remaining 5 spots will be filled based on the performances of the teams in the previous season. Once the slot is full, the teams will be divided into 2 groups comprising of 10 each. It will be a league format where the clubs will play each other twice. Once that is done, the knockout phase will be followed.
The top three teams of each group will qualify for the quarter-finals, whereas the teams that finished fourth and fifth from each group will compete in two-legged play-offs to join the others. The format is based on the proposed one made by UEFA for the Champions League that was supposed to start from 2024.
Why is the Super League facing so much backlash?
Because football as we know might come to an end. As this is a limited-seat tournament, the majority of it has also been booked. This means 15 teams will remain constant no matter what. And these 15 will enjoy a lot of benefits along the journey.
It has been reported that the founding members will be receiving €3.5 billion for their infrastructure development and to cover the loss caused by the pandemic. Moreover, their solidarity payments will be much higher than the current European competitions. At least €10 billion can be expected during the initial period for the clubs.
In the Champions League and the Europa League, only selected teams could qualify according to their League position. However, in the Super League, they won’t have to worry about that. As the 15 will remain as the permanent members, they will be getting funds every year. So, these clubs will be reaping benefits season after season, while the remaining ones will not have a similar advantage.
UEFA have also not taken this lightly as it has imposed some strict actions. UEFA along with the Football Associations and the respective leagues have issued a joint statement. It states that the clubs involved in the European Super League(ESL) will be barred from participating in the European competitions and their respective Leagues. Moreover, the players involved in this might also be banned from playing for their country on international levels. As of now, the discussion is still ongoing. In the latest updates, UEFA have approved their expressed Champions League format that will come into effect from 2024.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp had given his view on the Super League
Real Madrid, Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Juventus, Inter Milan, AC Milan, Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool, and Tottenham Hotspur are the respective 12 clubs who have agreed so far. These clubs have also resigned from the European Club Association.
Los Blancos president, Florentino Perez is the first Chairman of the Super League. Juventus‘ Andrea Agnelli and Manchester United’s Joel Glazer are the Vice-Chairmen. The club’s inclusion has not been taken well by anyone, especially the fans and club legends. Every fan has already started booing their clubs. Along with them, many pundits have also been slamming the clubs’ decision. However, a statement was made by Jurgen Klopp back in 2019.
“I hope this Super League will never happen. With the way the Champions League is now running, football has a great product, even with the Europa League.
“For me, the Champions League is the Super League, in which you do not always end up playing against the same teams. Of course, it is [financially] important, but why should we create a system where Liverpool faces Real Madrid for 10 straight years? Who wants to see that every year?” – Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp had told Kicker.