LONDON (AFP) – UEFA chief Aleksander Ceferin said on Thursday he was sick of talking about a breakaway European Super League, accusing club chiefs still committed to the idea of living in a “parallel world”.
Twelve of Europe’s biggest clubs signed up to the proposed new competition last April but it collapsed within days following a fierce backlash from their own players and fans, as well as governments and football’s governing bodies.
Nine clubs distanced themselves from the project but Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus remain on board with the concept and former England full-back Gary Neville warned this week that it could make a comeback.
Ceferin, addressing the Financial Times Business of Football Summit in London via videoconference, said he was “sick and tired” of speaking about the Super League.
“Look, first they launched this nonsense of an idea in the middle of a pandemic,” he said, speaking from the European governing body’s headquarters in Switzerland.
“Now we are reading articles every day they are planning to launch another idea in the middle of war (in Ukraine). They obviously live in a parallel world.
“While we are saving players, together with other stakeholders, and work to help in a terrible situation, they work on a project like that.”
He added: “This is complete nonsense and everyone except them knows it.”
Ceferin took aim at Juventus supremo Andrea Agnelli – formerly chairman of the European Club Association – who was one of the driving forces behind the original Super League proposal, aided by Real Madrid’s Florentino Perez.
“Last year was the first time not one, not two, not three, but 12 clubs, made a statement, which was a profound shout of alarm to the system, that we have to do something to create a sustainable industry,” said Agnelli.