Mansfield MP shows red card to European Super League plans
Mansfield’s MP has joined the chorus of outrage against plans within football to create a European Super League.
Ben Bradley, who is chairman of the all-party Parliamentary group for sport, has shown the red card to the proposed new breakaway league – describing it as ‘a kick in the teeth to fans’.
He has also backed Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s pledge to do all he can to stop the plans which, he said, would ‘strike at the heart of the domestic game’ and put money before supporters and their communities.
The plans involve six of England’s biggest and wealthiest clubs, Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur, joining up with several top sides from across Europe – including Real Madrid, Barcelona, Inter Milan and Juventus.
The European Super League, which is being financed by US investment bank JP Morgan, would rival, or even replace, the UEFA Champions League.
But the founding members would not be subject to any promotion or relegation and would benefit every season from its riches.
It has been widely condemned by supporters and officials, with the English clubs accused of greed that threatens to destroy the structure of the Premier League and Football League.
The Government has now launched a full review of the sport in this country to look at how it is governed and financed, with the possibility of appointing an independent regulator and giving fans more of a say.
Mr Bradley is himself a keen football supporter and has played for the all-party Parliamentary football team. He said: “I agree with the Prime Minister that plans for a European Super League cannot be allowed to happen.
"Clubs form major parts of our communities, and it’s not right to put profit before fans and open competition.
"Football would be nothing without its supporters, so I am delighted that the government has launched a fan-led review.
"The Super League would be deeply damaging to English and European football, ultimately ruining the spirit of the game.
"I echo the Prime Minister’s view that clubs should have a link with their local communities, and I hope football’s national governing bodies will be robust with their response.”