What next for the European Super League? - have your say on the future of football

The withdrawal of six Premier League teams from the European Super League has left the proposal in tatters.

Wednesday, 21st April 2021, 3:09 pm
For the Fans campaign

Manchester City Manchester United, Liverpool, Tottenham, Arsenal and Chelsea have all confirmed they intend to withdraw from the project.

So what comes next?

The ESL proposal was threatening the fabric and future of English football, and was in danger of having a knock-on effect for our communities, not just our clubs.

That is why the Lytham St Annes Express – along with our sister titles – launched a new campaign, For the Fans, to save the people’s game.

Our campaign strives to encourage a fan-led review to give supporters a bigger say in the future of their clubs.

After the plans were first announced on Sunday night, David Haythornthwaite, owner of Wesham-based AFC Fylde who play in sixth-tier National League North, suggested the ESL

proposal could be beaten if ‘everyone is prepared for a long fight’.

He said: “From a selfish point of view, a club such as ours could build on the clear disillusionment there is with the big clubs involved in this proposal and hope fans might come and watch

football more locally rather than travelling to Manchester and Liverpool.

“But that disillusionment and the general reaction to this from the football authorities FIFA and UEFA suggests this can be beaten – the vital thing is that everyone sticks to their guns and

is prepared for a long fight.

“There is no doubt the TV money and the money from foreign ownership has improved the standard of the Premier League and the game generally but for that, there is a price to pay and

this is the price.

“Owners based in Boston or New York don’t care about gate money from fans – it’s just a small bonus for them compared to all the money there is to be had from other sources.

“If the idea of banning players at clubs involved in this from international football is stuck to, that will certainly have an effect - I just hope the comments against it so far aren’t just

soundbites and that everyone sticks together and keeps up the pressure.

“It reminds me of the Packer cricket breakaway in the late 70s – in the end the traditional game prevailed but with some features from the Packer ideas which helped the game move

forward.

“I think it is telling that no German clubs have come forward for this yet.

“The clubs there are fan-led so the structure is very different and I think their reaction to this will be an important factor.”

To join our campaign, take part in our online survey on the future of English football here