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European Super League collapses after clubs withdraw

A banner against the proposed European Super League hangs from a pub close to Manchester United's Old Trafford stadium in Manchester, northwest England on April 21, 2021   -  
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OLI SCARFF/AFP or licensors


The Super League collapsed before a ball was kicked in the European breakaway competition after being abandoned by the six English clubs.

Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City, and Tottenham throughout Tuesday evening deserted the proposal to launch a largely-closed midweek competition amid an escalating backlash from their supporters and warnings from the British government that legislation could be introduced to thwart it.

On Wednesday, Spanish club Atletico Madrid announced that it had withdrawn from the league. It was followed shortly by Inter Milan. 

The Super League project was overseen by Real Madrid President Florentino Perez, who also signed up Barcelona and Atletico Madrid in Spain, and Juventus, AC Milan and Inter Milan from Italy. 

The rival for the UEFA-run Champions League became unviable without the six clubs from the world's richest league.

The remaining fledgling Super League organization was defiant, blaming ‘pressure’ being applied for forcing out the English clubs and insisting the proposal complied with the law and could yet be revived in some form.

“Given the current circumstances,'' the Super League said in a statement, “we shall reconsider the most appropriate steps to reshape the project, always having in mind our goals of offering fans the best experience possible while enhancing solidarity payments for the entire football community.''

The clubs heeded the appeals from UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin to remain part of the Champions League, which has a qualification criteria based on a team's performance in the domestic league.