In Summary

  • The court’s ruling does not mean that a competition such as the ESL must necessarily be approved.
  • The European Court Of Justice said that such rules were “contrary to EU law, contrary to competition law.

 

The FIFA and UEFA acted unlawfully in blocking the creation of the European Super League (ESL), the European Union’s top court has ruled.

The court had been asked to decide whether the two bodies acted against competition law with its rules which stopped the formation of the league in 2021 and then by seeking to sanction the clubs involved.

The European Court Of Justice said that such rules were “contrary to EU law, contrary to competition law and the freedom to provide services”, adding that FIFA and UEFA were abusing their dominant position in football.

The court’s ruling does not mean that a competition such as the ESL must necessarily be approved.

Judges added the court “does not rule on that specific project in its judgement”.

However, the ruling does bring fresh life into the proposals, which were thought to have been on hold after receiving widespread backlash from fans and clubs.

Its backers relaunched the Super League on Thursday after the judgment, proposing a three-tiered league and cup competition with teams from across Europe.

“This proposal has been shaped with the input of clubs with all sizes,” Bernd Reichart, the chief executive of A22 Sports, said in a statement.

 

The proposals

The proposal for the men’s game involves the following:
• A 64-team European competition system;
• The top two leagues will be known as the Star League and Gold League – potential replacements for the Champions League and Europa League;
• The Star and Gold league will have 16 teams each;
• The bottom league will be known as the Blue League;
• Promotion into the bottom league will come from domestic leagues only, implying teams locked in the top two leagues would be hard to remove.

December 21, 2023

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