Football bosses have reiterated their opposition to the creation of a European Super League amid speculation that the continent’s biggest clubs could be ready to mount a breakaway.
The Association of European Leagues has spoken after a report based on leaked documents suggested Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea, Liverpool and Arsenal are among 16 clubs which could take part in a new tournament within three years.
A statement said: ‘The European Leagues note the ongoing rumours and speculations around the possible creation of a European Super League by the big European professional clubs.
‘The Association of European Leagues has consistently voiced its strong opposition to the creation of any “closed and franchised-style” Super League.’
Opponents have warned that any such split could have serious consequences for domestic football around Europe.
The statement continued: ‘Domestic football is at the heart of the game throughout Europe for all football stakeholders: players, clubs, leagues, national associations and, more importantly, fans.
‘Proposals for a closed Super League will have serious and lasting implications for the long-term sustainability of professional football in Europe.
‘Within this context, the European Leagues fully supports UEFA in the management and organisation of European Club Competitions and shares with UEFA the common principle of protecting and enhancing competitive balance in European football.’