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Fifa bans Super League players from World Cup

  • Published at 03:23 pm January 21st, 2021
Fifa logo Reuters

In a joint statement with Uefa and the other five continental confederations Thursday, Fifa said they would not recognize any such breakaway

World football's governing body Fifa says players who feature in any breakaway European Super League would be banned from playing in Fifa competitions, including the World Cup.

In a joint statement with European governing body Uefa and the other five continental confederations Thursday, Fifa said they would not recognize any such breakaway.

The idea of a breakaway league, as an alternative to Uefa's flagship Champions League, has been floated for many years but speculation has intensified in the past two years.

While the statement restates Fifa's long-standing policy that all competitions should be recognized by national federations and confederations, the timing and joint nature of the declaration indicates a growing concern that this time the threats of a breakaway could be more than just a negotiating tactic from the big clubs.

In November 2018, German magazine Der Spiegel, citing leaked documents, reported that Real Madrid had been making plans for a Super League to feature the continent's biggest clubs.

Although a number of those clubs denied they were in talks, Real president Florentino Perez has continued to talk of the need for major changes in European club competition.

German international of Turkish descent Mesut Ozil joining Fenerbahce from Arsenal headlined what was a busy week of transfers in the European leagues.

Posted by Sports Tribune on Wednesday, 20 January 2021

In October, outgoing Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu said he had signed the club up to a Super League.

Monday, Real's Perez travelled to Turin to meet Juventus president Andrea Agnelli, who is head of the European Club Association which represents the biggest teams on the continent.

The European Leagues organization, which brings together the continent's domestic competitions, gave its backing to the stance taken by Fifa and Uefa.

In a statement the leagues said the plans were for a league with a "limited number of clubs similar to those franchise models operating in north America.

Thursday's joint statement also gave clear backing from Uefa and the other confederations to the plans for an expanded Fifa Club World Cup. 

Fifa had been cautious about the plans for an expanded 24 team tournament.

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