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European Super League: Gary Neville calls for clubs behind ‘scandalous’ plans to be docked points

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Lawrence Ostlere
·3-min read
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<p>Gary Neville: ‘You have got to stamp on this, it’s criminal, it’s a criminal act’</p> (Sky Sports)

Gary Neville: ‘You have got to stamp on this, it’s criminal, it’s a criminal act’

(Sky Sports)

Gary Neville described plans for a new European Super League as “scandalous” and called for the clubs involved to be docked points.

A group of 12 clubs from England, Spain and Italy have been in discussions about a new competition which would see them leave the Uefa Champions League and instead adopt a controversial format which would give founder clubs protected access to the league.

It is thought Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham are all supportive of the plans while Manchester City’s position is unclear. Bayern Munich are one of the only major European clubs to have voiced reservations.

Speaking about the developments during Sky Sports’ coverage of Manchester United and Burnley, Neville said: “I can’t concentrate on the game. The Premier League should deduct all top 6 clubs points this season. To sign up in the middle of the season, it’s a joke.

“I’m not against the modernisation of football competitions, we have the Premier League, the Champions League, but I think to bring forward proposals in the midst of Covid and the economic crisis for all clubs is an absolute scandal. United and the rest of the ‘Big Six’ that have signed up to it against the rest of the Premier League should be ashamed of themselves.”

Neville later added: “You have got to stamp on this, it’s criminal, it’s a criminal act against football fans in this country. This is the biggest sport in the world, the biggest sport in this country, it’s a criminal act against the fans. Deduct points, deduct money, and punish them.

“[The club owners] are bottle merchants. You never hear from these owners. In the middle of a pandemic … these lot are having Zoom calls about creating greed? Being a big club is not just about a global fanbase, it’s about doing the right thing. Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal – they should know better. The history and tradition of those clubs means something … that’s gone.”

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Former United captain Roy Keane agreed, saying: “I think it comes down to money, greed. Obviously we’ve heard nothing from Fifa yet but it doesn’t sound good. Let’s hope it’s stopped in its tracks. We talk about the big clubs. Bayern Munich are one of the biggest clubs in the world – at least they’ve made a stand, which is a good start.”

READ MORE: European Super League: How would it work, what would it look like, and who would be involved?

Former Manchester City defender Micah Richards said: “The Premier League has been run amazingly. We all know it’s a business but what happens to the fans, the memories fans have had over the years? Are they just forgotten about for the sake of money? I think it’s an absolute disgrace, to be honest.”

All three of the league bodies in Spain, Italy and England have condemned the plans, as have their respective football associations, in a joint-statement with Uefa.

Read More

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Uefa under pressure to ban European Super League clubs