On Day Three of the intense cross-continental fight over the European Super League, UEFA and the ECA have delivered the first major punch.
The ECA got their sought-after heft with the appointment of Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge as the honorary chairmen of the newly restructured executive committee.
|Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.||Photo: Michael Lucan/CC-by-SA 3.0|
Round one goes to the anti-Super-League proponents. If UEFA and the ECA were to move fast enough on this day, to outmaneuver the 12 clubs who defected from their ranks late Sunday evening, the first priority had to be finding a replacement for Juventus Turin's Andrea Angelli. The Italian left the ECA executive committee to serve under Real Madrid's Florentino Perez as the vice-President of the newly formed European Super League.
In bringing back Rummenigge to the ECA (and by extension UEFA), where he previously served from 2009 until 2017, the two bodies have effectively ensured that Bayern stands on one side of this debate. Additionally, a prominent spokesperson can now speak on behalf of the organizations during what promises to be another fierce week of tit-for-tat legal exchanges.
UEFA and the ECA already enlisted the services of top Bayern legal advisor Michael Gerlinger yesterday. This with knowledge of existing law shall prove indispensable over the coming days as UEFA seeks legal recourse to chuck the twelve clubs out of the confederation, the current Champions' League, and the national leagues they belong to.
FIFA has been nowhere near as active as the two European football confederations after the bombshell was dropped late Sunday night. FIFA nevertheless now has a German elected to its own high council in the form of DFB-vice-president Peter Peters. Rummenigge and Peters, together with the DFB's Rainer Koch, now give German football representation at the highest levels of FIFA, UEFA, and the ECA.
New Super League president Perez, who has now been threatened with consequences by FIFA too, currently sticks to the strategy of making his case for the breakaway on various media outlets. In an interview with Spanish TV's "El Chiringuito de Jugones", Perez accused UEFA of being a corrupt monopoly and insisted that the new league was "the only way to save football."
Perez confidently proclaimed that he was not worried that his Real Madrid would be thrown out of La Liga or the current Champions' League. The 75-year-old noted that the cadre of clubs would continue to work on starting the new league "as soon as possible".