Nasser Al-Khelaifi – the chairman of the European Club Association (ECA), the president of Paris Saint-Germain and the chairman of beIN Media Group – has said that there is no chance for the European Super League to be revived.
The competition, which was proposed in mid-2021 as an alternative to the UEFA Champions League fell apart less than 72 hours after it was announced, but there have been rumours of a similar plan being revived.
Al-Khelaifi, whose club PSG did not back the breakaway competition, spoke frankly about the proposal during an ECA general assembly in Vienna this week. He said: “Regarding the non-Super League, it doesn’t exist. Not the first [version], not the second. Everybody is against it – from the fans, the media, clubs, small and big clubs. There are three clubs only.”
Those three clubs – Barcelona, Real Madrid and Juventus – still remain convinced that European football requires reform via a new look competition.
LaLiga president Javier Tebas earlier this month said that the presidents of those three clubs recently met in Turin to formulate a new plan, specifically one that does not include English clubs. It was strong protests from English fans that proved to be the downfall of the Super League.
Al-Khelaifi highlighted a hypocrisy among the clubs driving the breakaway, stated: “The strange thing is, they enjoy playing now in UEFA competition. They’re enjoying playing in the best competition. I don’t think there’s a way that they potentially can do something like this because we are here united.”
UEFA last year announced a new format for the Champions League, which will feature 36 teams playing in a league format under the ‘Swiss system’. This format, set to be introduced front he 2024/25 season, would see the top eight automatically qualify for the last 16 with the remaining 16 clubs playing a further knock-out match for the remaining eight slots.