Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Manchester City, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur are among 12 clubs to have agreed to join a new European Super League.
These six English teams will join Italian giants AC Milan, Juventus and Inter Milan, as well as the three biggest teams in Spain: Real Madrid, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid.
It remains to be seen if European giants Paris Saint-Germain will join the new Super League, and as the only team left in the Champions League not to confirm that they are intent on joining, they may be awarded this year’s Champions League.
There has been a lot of backlash, with past and present players taking a firm stance on the new proposed league. Gary Neville has been highly praised for his response which can be seen below.
"This is disowning your own club stuff." 🚮@GNev2 hits out at the six clubs linked with a Super League breakaway and says they should be 'punished heavily' by the Premier League and English governing bodies.pic.twitter.com/WMx1TJ38nD
— Sky Sports (@SkySports) April 18, 2021
The new league will consist of the same teams every year with only five teams being able to qualify annually.
FIFA have said that they will not recognise the new European Super League and that players who decide to play in such a league will be denied the chance to play international football, including the World Cup.
The backlash to this new league continued with current players Ander Herrera and Mesut Ozil, who are among many others giving passionate and emotional responses to the news.
Kids grow up dreaming to win the World Cup and the Champions League – not any Super League. The enjoyment of big games is that they only happen once or twice a year, not every week. Really hard to understand for all football fans out there…⚽💔
— Mesut Özil (@MesutOzil1088) April 19, 2021
— Ander Herrera (@AnderHerrera) April 19, 2021
German sides Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund have declared that they will not join along with a host of others but this could potentially change in the future.
Politicians such as Boris Johnson and Emmanuel Macron also weighed in on the situation with Johnson saying that:
“These clubs are not just great global brands – of course they’re great global brands – they’re also clubs that have originated historically from their towns, from their cities, from their local communities, they should have a link with those fans, and with the fan base in their community.
“So it is very, very important that that continues to be the case. I don’t like the look of these proposals, and we’ll be consulting about what we can do.”
Emmanuel Macron said he was strongly opposed to the idea and that he hopes French clubs refuse to join.
"I was a criminal lawyer for 24 years and I've never, ever, seen people like that."
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) April 19, 2021
Statements from the 12 clubs announcing their intention to join the ESL have been met with strong resistance from UEFA, FIFA and other governing bodies.
It will be interesting to see which three clubs join the current five teams, that could potentially join the league through qualification, application or invitation.
All we know for now is that this story has just started and much more information is ready to be uncovered.