London, Oct 20 (efe-epa).- English Premier League giants Liverpool and Manchester United are involved in discussions with some of European football’s biggest teams to create a new tournament, Sky News reported Tuesday.
The Fifa-backed competition, which would overshadow the current Uefa Champions League, would be known as the European Super League. The European governing body does not support the proposal.
Sky News said that more than a dozen clubs from England, France, Germany, Spain and Italy were involved in talks with a group of financiers who were assembling a $6billion package to help launch the new super league.
The plans have not yet been finalized.
The league would see 18 teams play in a regular league format with each team playing the others twice, home and away — with the best placed teams moving on to a playoff knockout tournament at the end of the season to decide the champion.
The proposed format would mirror that used in the five major US sports.
Apart from Liverpool and Manchester United, who are both owned by Americans, Arsenal, Tottenham, Manchester City and Chelsea are the other English teams backing the plans.
The tournament would have a limit of five teams per country, meaning that one of the so-called Big Six could miss out each year.
Real Madrid, Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Juventus, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain are the other teams involved in the discussions, Sky News said.
The competition could be held as early as 2022, although it is certain to face major opposition from supporters of grass-roots soccer and other less wealthy rival top flight teams.
The report comes in the wake of another proposal – again headed by Liverpool and United – to restructure the English domestic game by redistributing broadcasting and sponsorship income more equally with the country’s lower leagues in exchange for more decision-making power to be in the hands of the Big Six. EFE/EPA