BAYERN MUNICH and Paris Saint-Germain have turned down the opportunity to join the European Super League.
The duo were the two most notable absentees, when 12 of Europe’s biggest clubs enraged supporters, players, managers and pundits alike by announcing the formation of a new European Super League.
And while both have been invited, neither appear likely to join up any time soon.
Bayern, who are partially fan-owned, have instead backed Uefa’s proposed reforms to the Champions League.
Club CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said: “FC Bayern did not participate in the planning of a Super League.
“We are convinced that the current structure in football guarantees a reliable foundation.
“FC Bayern welcomes the reforms of the Champions League because we believe that they are the right step for the development of European football.
“The modified preliminary round will contribute to more excitement and emotion in the competition.
“I do not believe the Super League will solve the financial problems of European clubs that were caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
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“Rather, all clubs in Europe should work in solidarity to ensure that the cost structure, especially players’ salaries and agents’ fees, are brought in line with revenues in order to make all of European football more rational.”
PSG chairman Nasser Al-Khelaifi, who was today re-elected to the Uefa Executive Committee as representative of the European Club Association, echoed Bayern’s stance.
He said: “Paris Saint-Germain has the firm conviction that football is a sport for all. I have been constant on this point from the very beginning.
“It must be remembered that as a football club, we are a family and a community, whose heart is our supporters, we must remember that.
“There is a clear need to change Uefa’s existing competition model, and the proposal presented yesterday by Uefa, which concludes 24 months of in-depth consultation of the entire European football landscape, is a step in this direction.
“We believe that any proposal without the support of Uefa – an organization which has strived to advance the interests of European football for almost 70 years – does not solve the problems the football community is currently facing, but is otherwise motivated by personal interests.
“Paris Saint-Germain will continue to work with Uefa, the European Club Association and all stakeholders in European football on the basis of the principles of good faith, dignity and respect for each”.
Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig have also confirmed their disdain for the new European Super League, all-but confirming that there will be no German participation.
PSG are quite happy with their current situation, with Champions League qualification each season virtually locked in due to the financial disparity between themselves and the rest of Ligue 1.
And while determined to dine at Europe’s top table, club president Al-Khelaifi has a very strong relationship with Fifa and Uefa – and with Ceferin in particular.
The club’s owners, the Qatar Sports Investments group, also hold rights to broadcast Champions League football on BeINSports.
And Qatar itself is to host the World Cup next year, making conflict with either Uefa or Fifa counter productive.
These developments mean that, as it stands, the ESL would be without Kylian Mbappe, Neymar, Erling Haaland and Robert Lewandowski – four of the world’s most popular and brand-friendly footballers on the planet – undermining their product as a whole.
The ESL’s formation has been met by anger and derision from all quarters, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson having written in The Sun that he will do whatever he can to stop it.
Prince William has also spoken of the ‘damage’ it will do to the game, while Jamie Carragher and Gary Neville launched a rallying cry to fans on Monday Night Football, attempting to mobilise disgruntled supporters into action.
The likes of James Milner and Ander Herrera have spoken up against the hideous plans – while Jurgen Klopp was also less than impressed – having admitted his unease with the idea of an ESL two years ago.
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