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European Clubs Reject ECA Super League Proposal

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Fears of an inevitable super league may have been overstated, at least in the short-term.

FC Barcelona v Real Madrid - Copa del Rey Semi Final Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images

In recent months, plenty of talk has been made about a proposed European Super League that would kick off in 2024 when the current agreements governing participation in the Champions League and Europa League expire.

Today, though, the radical changes being pushed by a few top European sides and that could have resulted in a new, expanded format including weekend games and protection from European relegation appear off the table.

With European Club Association members from the top five leagues voting in their league assemblies, only four—Real Madrid, Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, and Juventusvoted in favour of the proposal. The remaining 98 voted against or abstained.

It’s a result that all but kills off the possibility of a super league in the immediate future, and given vocal opposition by England and Germany—both citing a potential for damage to domestic football—in recent weeks it’s hardly a surprise.

For Premier League clubs in particular, there has been a strong resistance to any changes to European Competition that could negatively impact their domestic earning potential when 18 of Europe’s 30 richest clubs are English.

Now that the proposal has failed, the ECA will meet with UEFA in the autumn to begin work on a new deal to extend the current intra-league framework beyond 2024. It is expected that they will push for some changes to the current status quo.

Any such proposed changes, though, won’t be as radical as ECA members splitting from UEFA en masse to form a super league with locked-in founding members, a much expanded schedule, and domestic games displaced to mid-week.