European football governing body, UEFA, has suspended legal disciplinary proceedings against Real Madrid, Juventus and Barcelona for their involvement in European Super League plot.
In a statement released by UEFA, the governing body decided to suspend legal action against the trio on a temporary basis. The statement read:
“UEFA takes note of the decision taken by the independent UEFA Appeals Body to temporarily suspend the disciplinary proceedings that had been opened against FC Barcelona, Juventus FC and Real Madrid CF for a potential violation of UEFA’s legal framework in connection with the so-called ‘Super League’ project.”
Out of the original 12 founding members, Juventus, Real Madrid and Barcelona were the only remaining teams in the ESL. UEFA has previously threatened the trio with heavy sanctions, including a ban from UEFA Champions League if they persist with the idea of a European Super League.
In their statement, UEFA also clarified that they are still unhappy with Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus’ Super League project and could face action soon. The statement reads as follows:
“The decision of the independent UEFA Appeals Body has been taken without prejudice to the question about the enforceability of the Court Order in Switzerland. In reliance on the Court Order, the mentioned three clubs have sought to shield themselves from potential disciplinary consequences related to this so-called ‘Super League’ project.”
The European football governing body announced in May that it had launched a disciplinary investigation into the three clubs, after they refused to recant their support for the breakaway competition.
If found guilty of breaking UEFA’s rules the clubs could face a ban from European competition, including the Champions League, for two years. All three clubs qualified this season.
But the court order has forced UEFA to back down.
Reports say UEFA has not given up hope of restarting its investigation soon, which could still result in a Champions League ban for the trios, but that would require the legal and disciplinary processes to be concluded within a few months, which would appear to be a challenging timetable.
Lawyers have seen UEFA’s aggressive approach to the ESL founders as risky because on April 20, the Super League obtained an interim court order in Madrid, on the very eve of the Super League’s collapse.
The court banned UEFA and FIFA from making more threats or doing anything to intimidate the breakaway league or any of its participants.
UEFA appeared undeterred and continued to rebuke the rebels and launched its disciplinary process, regardless.
But it will take time for both the legal wrangle between UEFA and the clubs, as well as any subsequent disciplinary process to be resolved.
“In reliance on the Court Order, the mentioned three clubs have sought to shield themselves from potential disciplinary consequences related to this so-called ‘Super League’ project,” UEFA’s statement reads.
“UEFA understands why the disciplinary proceedings needed to be suspended for the time being, but remains confident in and will continue to defend its position in all the relevant jurisdictions.’
Due to their continued support of the European Super League, UEFA believe Barcelona, Real Madrid and Juventus have violated UEFA’s legal framework which sooner or later warrants disciplinary action. UEFA says:
“UEFA understands why the disciplinary proceedings needed to be suspended for the time being, but remains confident in and will continue to defend its position in all the relevant jurisdictions.”
The six Premier League clubs who had joined the ESL confirmed on Wednesday that their involvement in the breakaway league was wrong. In a joint statement released by the English FA, the teams accepted their fine of £22 million, which will be used to improve grassroots football in the country. The statement read:
“The £22m is a “a gesture of goodwill” that will “go towards the good of the game, including new investment in support for fans, grassroots football and community programmes.”
The clubs have also agreed that any similar action in the future will warrant a 30-point deduction and a £25 million fine.