European Super League: Teams cannot leave due to ‘binding contract’, warns Florentino Perez

Tom Doyle
·2-min read
 (ES Composite)
(ES Composite)

Clubs who want to back out of the European Super League cannot leave due to “binding” contracts, according to Real Madrid president Florentino Perez.

On Tuesday night, the controversial proposals for a new Super League lay in tatters as the Premier League’s ‘Big Six’ - Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal, Man City and Tottenham - all backed out of the competition having only announced their involvement on Sunday night.

Perez was one of the leading figures in the breakaway competition, and would have been named chairman of the Super League - but the competition’s future looks in serious doubt.

Real Madrid are one of three teams along with Barcelona and Juventus yet to abandon the project, and Perez says it is not so simple for clubs to leave.

“I don’t need to explain what a binding contract is but effectively, the clubs cannot leave,” Perez told Spanish newspaper AS on Saturday.

“Some of them, due to pressure, have said they’re leaving. But this project, or one very similar, will move forward and I hope very soon.”

The Super League was dealt another blow on Friday when JPMorgan, who had provided a £2.8billion grant to the founding clubs, said it had “misjudged how the deal would be viewed”.

Perez, however, said the bank was still on board.

“It’s not true they’ve withdrawn. They have taken some time for reflection, just like the 12 clubs. If we need to make changes we will but the Super League is the best project we’ve thought of,” he added.

“The partnership still exists as do the members who comprise the Super League. What we have done is taken a few weeks to reflect in light of the fury of certain people who don’t want to lose their privileges and have manipulated the project.”

Perez reiterated the need for the new competition to boost clubs struggling to cope with losses from the Covid-19 pandemic, adding that the 12 Super League clubs had lost a combined 650 million euros last year and stood to lose up to 2.5 billion euros this year.

He was also not convinced by UEFA’s next reform of the Champions League, which will see the competition expanded to 36 teams from 2024.

“The Super League is the best possible project to help football come out of the crisis. Football is gravely hurt and we have to adapt to the era we live in,” he added.

“I think that the Champions League reform isn’t the best it can be, and what’s more we cannot wait until 2024.”

Additional reporting by Reuters.

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