By Prof Dr Ian Blackshaw
In my Post of 21 June 2021, I posed the question: ‘Is the European Super League Dead?’
According to the latest developments, it would appear not!
In fact, on 1 July 2021, the Madrid Commercial Court ordered the European Football Governing Body, UEFA, to annul all legal sanctions imposed on Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus for being involved in the ESL project. These sanctions include participation in, amongst other competitions, the popular and lucrative UEFA Champions League.
The Court also ordered UEFA not to oblige the organisers of the ESL to dissolve the Company setting up the ESL, which Company is incorporated in Madrid, and also blocked UEFA from imposing a €100 million fine on the Clubs concerned.
Furthermore, the English Premier League and the Italian National Football Federation have also been ordered to annul the sanctions imposed on the Clubs that originally signed up to the ESL.
In addition, a reference has been made to the European Court of Justice seeking its advice on whether the setting up of the ESL breaches the European Union Rules on Competition in Articles 101 and 102 of the European Treaty. In other words, whether UEFA, in opposing the setting up of the ESL, is abusing its monopoly position in claiming to be the only body that can legally organise and sanction European football competitions.
The President of Real Madrid, Florentino Perez, the Chairman of the proposed ESL, has maintained all along that the setting up of the ESL is designed to save European football, which he claims to be in a dire situation.
Watch this space for further developments in the continuing ESL affair!