Report: European Super League Planned for 2021, Arsenal to Opt Out

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistNovember 3, 2018

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 31: A general view of Emirates Stadium at Sunset during the Carabao Cup Fourth Round match between Arsenal and Blackpool at Emirates Stadium on October 31, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)
Marc Atkins/Getty Images

Arsenal reportedly do not wish to break away from the Premier League to form a European Super League, despite being mooted as a potential founder of one in 2021.

In a report published by German outlet Der Spiegel based on Football Leaks documents, the Gunners are said to have attended a meeting alongside Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool and Chelsea back in 2016 to discuss the possibility of a Super League.

However, per Sky Sports' Lyall Thomas, sources at Arsenal said "they consider it important to be involved in conversations about the future direction of the game, both domestically and in Europe," but they are committed to the Premier League and are "unaware" of a proposed Super League launching in 2021.

Per Der Spiegel, it's said the Gunners and the other four English clubs are set to sign a document this month alongside Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus, AC Milan, Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich to become the "founders" of the Super League, making them immune to relegation from it.

The 11 clubs would be joined by five "initial guests" to take the number of teams in the league to 16, per sports lawyer Dan Chapman:

Dan Chapman @DanFullContact

So here is the first of the new #FootballLeaks stories from @EICnetwork : a suggestion that 11 European clubs have been negotiating to form a Super League. 5 Premier League clubs included. https://t.co/Hq5hQLT71s

Opting out of such a venture would potentially mean missing out on lucrative revenues.

However, if the clubs involved were to leave behind their domestic associations, Arsenal could benefit from the power vacuum left in their wake, as the majority of their biggest rivals for the Premier League title would no longer be present.

There are a number of other reasons clubs might prefer not to be a part of such a project, as noted by The Times' Henry Winter and BBC Sport's John Bennett:

Henry Winter @henrywinter

A European super league with no relegation for its 11 founding members would have no sporting integrity for a start, let alone the sheer greed and arrogance of the idea. That’s a private members’ club not a proper competition. No risk, no drama, no credibility. No thanks.

John Bennett @JohnBennettBBC

Can’t imagine one match going football fan that would ever in a million years want a European Super League. If it ever happens we may as well all call it a day with football. This isn’t a computer game, it’s years of history. It’s the whole fabric of the sport.

There's much that is yet to be worked out, and the Super League may not come to fruition at all.

If a breakaway does take place, Arsenal will have a big decision to make as to whether they'll be a part of it.  


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