The last couple of days have been quite a tumultuous time to be a football fan. After Real Madrid president Florentino Perez announced the idea of the European Super League – a cash-rich revamp of the Champions League which would feature only the top European clubs, the footballing world went into a meltdown pondering the consequences.
The ideals of the sport were at stake, as the Super League was deemed to be standing against everything that makes the game beautiful. Fans took to social media to protest against the competition, but the scales truly tipped over when fans took to the streets – bringing about an exodus.
Ahead of Chelsea’s Premier League outing against Brighton and Hove Albion, the club’s supporters staged a planned protest outside Stamford Bridge which was even streamed on YouTube – a massive protest that stopped the Chelsea bus and brought out a certain Petr Cech to help calm the nerves.
The scenes outside Stamford Bridge yesterday as fans fought the Super League and won— Goal (@goal) April 21, 2021
The protests in West London were quickly succeeded by reports that Chelsea were preparing paperwork to leave the Super League.
Chelsea’s efforts were soon followed by Manchester City’s club statement saying that they had backed out as well, setting a domino effect in motion which also saw Liverpool players taking on the Super League with a message on social media.
The late hours of the night saw Liverpool, Arsenal and Spurs exit the Super League as well, while the domino effect also ended up costing Man Utd director of football Ed Woodward’s job – soon followed by United backing out too.
By the end of the night, all six of England’s biggest clubs had backed out of the Super League, highly contrasting Perez’s statement about the Super League contract signed by the said clubs being binding and irreversible.
9:23pm: Man City withdraw from Super League— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) April 21, 2021
10:55pm: Arsenal withdraw from Super League
10:55pm: Liverpool withdraw from Super League
10:55pm: Tottenham withdraw from Super League
10:56pm: Man Utd withdraw from Super League
00:51am: Chelsea withdraw from Super League
What a day. pic.twitter.com/OxTeRsPCxr
It was a night when football won, as the fans showed that it was them who make the sport what it is – and no new footballing height can be reached without the support of thousands of fans across the world.
El Plastico is dead for now, thanks to fan-power and the likes of Gary Neville, Carragher, Henderson, Shaw and Klopp speaking out powerfully. But the shamed owners are still here, their greed has not abated. DCMS review promises hope – if it has real teeth. #SuperLeague— Henry Winter (@henrywinter) April 21, 2021
The European Super League which was in the works for as much as 20 years in the past is as of now, suspended indefinitely only after a couple of days – and football continues to be a meritocracy, instead of a means to rake in more revenue at the cost of fairytale stories which truly make the beautiful game what it is.