Super League news LIVE: AC Milan quit ESL after Premier League withdrawals

Boris Johnson vows to block European Super League

The breakaway European Super League is no longer, that’s according to Andrea Agnelli, chairman of Juventus and the ESL, who admitted that without the Premier League’s ‘Big Six’, the breakaway competition cannot go ahead as planned.

Less than 48 hours after the 12 founding members confirmed their plans to move away from Uefa’s Champions League and redefine the structure of European football, all six English clubs (Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City and Tottenham) were forced into an embarrassing climbdown.

Following the English clubs’ announcements, Atletico Madrid and Inter Milan have confirmed they too are out, which leaves Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus and AC Milan yet to confirm their departure although Agnelli’s Serie A champions are considered out too.

“Despite the announced departure of the English clubs, forced to take such decisions due to the pressure on them, we are convinced our proposal is fully aligned with European law and regulations,” the league said in a statement.

“Given the current circumstances, we shall reconsider the most appropriate steps to reshape the project, always having in mind our goals of offering fans the best experience possible while enhancing solidarity payments for the entire football community”.

Follow all the latest below as we will bring breaking news, reaction and analysis through the day on this seismic story for European football.

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AC Milan issue statement on European Super League

A statement read: “We accepted the invitation to participate in the Super League project with the genuine intention to deliver the best possible European competition for football fans around the world and in the best interest of the club and our own fans. Change is not always easy, but evolution is necessary for progress, and the structures of European football have evolved and changed over the decades.

“However, the voices and the concerns of fans around the world have clearly been expressed about the Super League, and AC Milan must be sensitive to the voice of those who love this wonderful sport.

“We will continue to work hard to deliver a sustainable model for football.”

Jack Rathborn21 April 2021 12:26


Nicky Butt: ‘What happened is the worst case of bullying from powerful people’

Nicky Butt reacts to the European Super League: “I don’t think apologies are too great anyway, what happened should not have happened. What happened is the worst case of bullying from powerful people, whether they apologise or not is irrelevant to me.

“It’ll take a hell of a long time [for the clubs to regain the fans’ trust]. It’ll be very, very difficult. That’s something they have to work out.”

Jack Rathborn21 April 2021 12:13


Ronald Koeman speaks out over Barcelona’s position on European Super League

“I spoke with president yesterday, he explained the club’s position. But a lot changed since yesterday. Best not to say much now, no one knows what will happen. What I want most is what’s best for this club.”

Jack Rathborn21 April 2021 12:10


33 of the best memes and jokes about unravelling of the European Super League

Fans, pundits, players and managers would have directly been affected by the league, which aimed to replace the Champions League with a set competition of 20 teams, 15 of which would not be relegated regardless of results.

Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur were all set to be involved in the league but, slowly on Tuesday, all began to back away and confirm they would no longer be taking part. Inter Milan and Atletico Madrid dropped out on Wednesday morning leaving the future of The Super League in serious doubt.

As a result, the six English teams have issued statements with some apologising for attaching their names to the scheme. Ed Woodward, the executive vice-chairman of Man Utd, has also resigned and will leave the role at the end of the year.

As it stands, just, Real Madrid, Barcelona, AC Milan and Juventus remain but there are rumours that even some of those teams have their own concerns and trepidations about the project. In fact, Juventus chairman Andrea Agnelli, one of the masterminds behind the project, has suggested it can no longer go ahead.

Jack Rathborn21 April 2021 11:49


‘OK, bye’: Premier League players react to Super League’s collapse

Premier League players celebrated the demise of the European Super League after six English clubs withdraw from the competition less than 48 hours after its announcement, bringing the entire project to its knees.

Juventus president Andrea Agnelli has now admitted the project is effectively dead without Premier League input, while Atletico and Inter have become the latest clubs to flee the sinking ship.

Raheem Sterling was one of the highest profile players to speak out, with a simple “OK, bye” to the Super League, a competition which his club Manchester City signed up to, but about which his manager Pep Guardiola made clear on Tuesday the squad were left totally in the dark.

Jack Rathborn21 April 2021 11:48


EFL: The pyramid must be protected above all

The EFL welcomes the decision made by six English Premier League teams to withdraw intentions to join a European Super League.

With widespread opposition met at home and abroad, including from the EFL, these divisive proposals threatened the sporting principles of the football pyramid that our founding members pioneered over a century ago.

Across the globe, people in and outside of the game spoke up when it counted. The EFL is heartened by the response and remain proud to be part of a unified footballing system that promotes open competition, gives everybody a chance to dream and continues to inspire generations of young people in the communities from where our Clubs take their name.

The message is clear that the pyramid must be protected above all. The European Super League failed in part due to a model of distorted and unfair financial distributions, a criticism that can also be levelled at the current financial model in our own domestic game.

The EFL hopes the same enthusiasm can be immediately directed to achieve appropriate and much needed change to the distribution of wealth in our domestic leagues, and we will work with all parties to push for this reform.

By resetting economically, we can support all Clubs in achieving a sustainable future, promoting the principles that so many have fought for.

Reforms must also consider UEFA’s own Champions League restructuring which pose an existential threat to our competitions, including the League Cup, which provides vital income to EFL Clubs and is the breeding ground for stars of the future.

The EFL will embrace the Government’s fan-led review and confirm we will contribute fully to help shape any decisions taken and ensure they are made in the best interests of supporters and the Clubs that we represent.


Jack Rathborn21 April 2021 11:46


Dowden backs ‘German model’ for English clubs in ownership restructure

Sports secretary Oliver Dowden has backed English clubs embracing the “German model” for football to hand fans a minimum 51% stake in their clubs.

As a result of the fierce backlash to the European Super League plans, Dowden is a fan of English clubs adopting the model seen in Germany.

“They talked about the German model – German clubs didn’t take part in this, that’s because fans had the greater stake in it,” he said.

“We’ve seen over time fans stake in clubs erode, I think its important we look at that to give fans greater influence and control.”

Jack Rathborn21 April 2021 11:36


European Super League clubs set to lose at least £8m

European Super League clubs are set for a hefty financial hit after signing up to the doomed breakaway competition and withdrawing just two days later.

That is according to the Mail, who claim the 12 clubs will lose an initial £8m each, which is connected to equity stakes purchased in the Super League for a three-year commitment.

Further penalties could occur with the contracts signed last week likely to have clauses to financially punish teams for leaving so as to avoid what has transpired over the last 24 hours with the mass withdrawal.

Jack Rathborn21 April 2021 11:34


Agnelli: English clubs withdrew over threat of government interference

Agnelli told Reuters: “I have had speculation to that extent that if six teams would have broken away and would have threatened the EPL (Premier League), politics would have seen that as an attack to Brexit and their political scheme.”

Jack Rathborn21 April 2021 11:24


Agnelli: Other clubs asked to join European Super League

“I’m not going to say how many clubs contacted me in just 24 hours asking if they could join,” Agnelli told Reuters, but stopped at naming those clubs. “Maybe they lied, but I was contacted by a number of teams asking what they could do to join.”

Jack Rathborn21 April 2021 11:22

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