Alan Shearer has broken his silence on plans for a European Super League, revealing he is ‘shocked and disgusted’ by the announcement.
In a despicable power grab that bids to make the rich even richer, the breakaway plans propose that England’s “big six” will now join Real Madrid, Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Juventus, AC Milan and Inter Milan in a 12-club ‘Super League’.
The former Newcastle United No.9 believes this is fuelled by greed, goes against everything fans want and is ‘disrespectful to the sport’ – yet has real fears it will go ahead of common sense fails to prevail.
He also explains how such a move would put an end to the footballing fairytales we’ve seen over the years – such as Leicester’s incredible title-winning season and West Ham’s shock rise from relegation contenders to top four hopefuls this year – and questions how the likes of Spurs and Arsenal can justify their involvement in such a ‘Super League’ when both are way behind the pace in the current Premier League season!
Here’s what he’s had to say when speaking to Coral:
‘I’m shocked, surprised, disgusted really, by this announcement from the so-called elite of European football.
‘Tottenham and Arsenal, two of the six English clubs involved, currently sit in seventh and ninth in the Premier League, hardly the positions you’d expect from elite clubs. Sadly, I don’t believe this is anything more than these clubs attempting to line their pockets even more.’
‘It’s disrespectful to the sport, to the history of the game, and more importantly it’s disrespectful to the fans. If they listen to the fans now, which I doubt very much they will, the reaction to this news will tell the club owners that this is not what the fans want, and I mean the fans of the clubs involved, not just of those clubs who aren’t part of this.’
‘My one hope during the last year of the pandemic was that fans would be treated with greater respect by clubs, by the footballing authorities, when this was all over, as we’ve all seen that the game is not the same without those fans, it’s not the spectacle it should be when it’s played in empty stadia.’
‘But this announcement goes in the opposite direction to that hope. We’ve heard clubs say how important fans are to them, well now is their chance to prove that, as the fans have spoken, they do not want this.’
‘There is nothing more to this than these clubs trying to make themselves richer, it really is that cynical.’
‘I mean let’s look at some of the clubs involved, yes, they have a rich history and tradition, but with some of them, it’s been a while since they were winning titles. Inter Milan, no title since 2010; AC Milan, 2011; Juventus, currently fourth in Serie A; Manchester United, no title since 2013; and as I say, Spurs and Arsenal, never mind winning the Premier League, both are outside the top four in the Premier League, and by some way.’
‘This is 100% about these clubs making more money, it’s nothing to do with what the fans want.’
‘These twelve clubs dropped a huge grenade on the sport with this announcement, and the Premier League should respond with a grenade of their own, and say, OK, you’re going to be banned from the Premier League from next season, that’s how they should deal with this.’
‘These clubs want to have their cake and eat it, they think they can play these Super League games in midweek, and their domestic leagues at weekends, but I hope the leagues say no, that’s not happening.’
‘I also hope that clubs such as Bayern Munich and PSG – two clubs that are definitely in the elite right now – stick by their decision and remain out of this. Both are hugely successful and I admire their stance, I hope that doesn’t change.’
‘One of the greatest things about sport, about football, is that a team like Leicester, like the Blackburn team I played for, like West Ham this season, can achieve anything if they perform where and when it matters, on the pitch. If you take away that opportunity, that chance, you take away the dream, and that is not sport as we know it, it’s not football as I’d ever want to see it.’
‘Do I think this will happen? We’ve seen these clubs lobby UEFA for a while now, about getting a bigger slice of the European pie, and now they’ve done this, thrown the nuclear option at UEFA and the individual Leagues, it will be fascinating to see how these bodies react to this. I’d hope that common sense would prevail, but I’d be really worried that it doesn’t.’
‘These clubs can dress it up how they want, that it’s about protecting their interests to protect the wider game, but it’s simply about greed.’
Nail on the head.