UEFA ‘temporarily’ stop Super League punishment: what happens now

by | Jun 9, 2021 17:52 | News, Champions League, Inter, Juventus, Milan, Serie A

UEFA make clear the disciplinary proceedings against Juventus, Real Madrid and Barcelona are only ‘temporarily’ suspended due to new legal action, but they will certainly play the Champions League this season.

These three clubs are the only ones still signed up to the Super League project, as the other nine disavowed it within 48 hours following mass protests from fans.

They continue to maintain that they are legally in the clear to create a separate tournament from UEFA and FIFA.

The change over the last four days was that the injunction in a Madrid court from last month was finally served to UEFA and FIFA offices via Swiss authorities on Saturday.

According to the New York Times, it means UEFA must first challenge that ruling or be open to potential prosecution and have to pay the clubs damages if they go ahead with the disciplinary action.

Essentially, if the plan had been to exclude Juventus, Real Madrid and Barcelona from the Champions League, that will definitely not happen this season.

However, the latest statement from UEFA shows they are still determined to punish the rebel clubs eventually.

“UEFA takes note of the decision taken today 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.

“UEFA notes that the decision to temporarily stay the proceedings has been taken by the UEFA Appeals Body following the formal notification made to UEFA by the Swiss competent authorities on 2 June 2021 of an ex-parte court order obtained on 20 April 2021 by the legal entity European Super League Company SL from the Madrid Commercial Court No. 17 (the “Court Order”). 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.

“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 legitimacy of sports disciplinary procedures, with the right to appeal to the Court of Arbitration of Sport, has long been recognised as being essential to the uniform administration of justice in sport. The European Court of Human Rights, EU Courts and the Swiss Federal Tribunal have repeatedly ruled that disciplinary/arbitration rules are justified by legitimate interests linked to the specific nature of the sport. UEFA, therefore, acted in accordance with not only its Statutes and Regulations, but also with EU law, the European Convention on Human Rights and Swiss law in opening an independent investigation into the conduct of the clubs associated with this so-called ‘Super League’ project.

“UEFA will take all necessary steps in strict accordance with national and EU law in order for the UEFA Appeals Body to be in a position to resume the disciplinary proceedings as soon as possible.”

Meanwhile, the six Premier League clubs have already accepted their punishment today, collectively paying £22m that will go to grassroots clubs.

Above all, they have agreed to a suspended sentence of a €25m fine and 30-point deduction in the Premier League should they attempt to join another breakaway project in future.

Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham had joined the project, along with Atletico Madrid, Inter and Milan.

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