The Premier League has called a meeting for Tuesday morning to discuss the proposed European Super League with the 14 clubs not involved in the controversial plans.
Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur, as well as Manchester United, Manchester City and Liverpool, have not been invited to the talks after the clubs signed up to the breakaway European competition.
The ‘Big Six’ have joined AC Milan, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, Inter Milan, Juventus and Real Madrid as founding members of the European Super League (ESL), which is being set up as a direct rival to the Champions League.
Tomorrow’s Premier League meeting has been called to formally discuss potential sanctions against those who want to play in the ESL.
In a statement issued on Sunday night, the ESL said it wanted to establish a “new midweek competition” which was “intended to commence as soon as practicable” with teams continuing to “compete in their respective national leagues”.
However, Tuesday’s meeting is expected to include discussion around the league’s next steps, amid suggestions that breakaway sides could be excluded from their domestic competitions.
There have been calls for the Big Six clubs to be deducted points or kicked out of current European competitions.
“The Premier League condemns any proposal that attacks the principles of open competition and sporting merit which are at the heart of the domestic and European football pyramid,” the Premier League said in a statement.
“Fans of any club in England and across Europe can currently dream that their team may climb to the top and play against the best. We believe that the concept of a European Super League would destroy this dream.
“The Premier League is proud to run a competitive and compelling football competition that has made it the most widely watched league in the world. Our success has enabled us to make an unrivalled financial contribution to the domestic football pyramid.
“A European Super League will undermine the appeal of the whole game, and have a deeply damaging impact on the immediate and future prospects of the Premier League and its member clubs, and all those in football who rely on our funding and solidarity to prosper.
“We will work with fans, The FA, EFL, PFA and LMA, as well as other stakeholders, at home and abroad, to defend the integrity and future prospects of English football in the best interests of the game.”
Uefa president Aleksander Ceferin hit out at the proposals in a fiery press conference on Monday, describing them as a “spit in the face of football lovers”.
Ceferin also said any players who play in the ESL would be banned from competing in World Cups and European Championships.
The ESL would comprise the 12 founding members, plus as yet unnamed three others, with five more sides qualifying via their respective domestic leagues.
Sides would be split into two groups of 10, playing home and away fixtures, with the top three in each group automatically qualifying for the quarter-final stages which would then work much like the Champions League.
The statement from the 12 clubs said: “Founding clubs will receive an amount of €3.5bn solely to support their infrastructure investment plans and to offset the impact of the Covid pandemic.”
It added: “The new annual tournament will provide significantly greater economic growth and support for European football … and [solidarity payments] are expected to be in excess of €10bn during the course of the initial commitment period of the clubs.”