Arsenal, Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester City, Manchester United, Real Madrid, Tottenham, Atletico Madrid, AC Milan, and Inter Milan will join Messi’s Barcelona and Ronaldo’s Juventus at the table, which will be funded by Wall Street bank JP Morgan.
Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund of Germany, as well as Paris Saint-Germain of France and FC Porto of Portugal, have declined invitations to enter the league. The proposals were quickly condemned by UEFA, the governing body of European soccer, which said in a statement on Sunday that it would not only expel such teams from their domestic leagues but would also exclude players from playing for their national teams.
No Messi and Ronaldo at World Cup Tournaments?
If the Super League is approved, Messi and Ronaldo will no longer be able to play for Argentina or Portugal. Messi is Argentina’s all-time leading goal scorer with 71 goals in 142 appearances, while Ronaldo is Portugal’s all-time leading goal scorer and appearance maker with 103 goals in 173 games.
Hundreds of other foreign stars, including Bruno Fernandes of Portugal, Eden Hazard of Belgium, Luis Suarez of Uruguay, and Mohamed Salah of Egypt, will be banned from World Cup tournaments if the plans are implemented. FIFPro, which represents 60,000 soccer players worldwide, said in a statement that the proposals could cause “irreparable harm” to the sport, adding that it would “vigorously resist steps by either side that would hinder players’ rights, such as exclusion from national teams.”
Although UEFA has threatened to ban Super League players from participating in international matches, it is uncertain if such a ban would be enforceable; even if it were, it would almost certainly face legal challenges.
In an email, Simon Leaf, who is the head of sport at law firm Mischon de Reya, said that players and their agents would also be keeping a close eye on things. He also said that recent ice-skating case law gave them hope against future exclusion from international competitions. He is referring to a 2017 case, in which the European Commission ruled in favor of two Dutch speed skaters who wanted to compete in a new breakaway skating tournament.
The commission overturned the decision of the ice skating authorities, who had prohibited them from doing so. Leaf said that they expected the big-name athletes to take whatever steps were required to ensure that they could perform at the highest level internationally.
What Other Soccer Players Think
Some players are speaking out against Messi’s participation in the European Super League.
Lionel Messi has yet to respond. Although Messi and Ronaldo have not yet spoken out about the upcoming European Super League, several other players have. Ander Herrera, for example, wrote on Twitter that he fell in love with popular soccer and with the dream of seeing the team of his heart play against the greatest.
Will we be able to see Ronaldo and Messi at World Cup tournaments again? Only time will tell.