UEFA vice-president Fernando Gomes has delivered a scathing assessment of a proposed European Super League, which the Portuguese says is the “exacerbation of selfishness and greed” at a time of global uncertainty.
Outgoing Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu revealed at a press conference while announcing his resignation from his post that the club intended to join a breakaway European league in future.
The proposition would involve the elite teams from the continent but Gomes, the president of the Portuguese Football Federation and chairman of the UEFA club competitions committee, is aghast at the idea.
In a statement released to the PA news agency, Gomes said: “The hypothesis of the creation of any kind of European Super League deserves my complete disagreement and refusal.
“I disagree because it violates all principles of sporting merit. As far as we know, it would be a sort of self-proclaimed privileged club.
“It deserves my refusal because the world is currently experiencing its greatest challenge, at least for the last century, and the last thing it needs is the exacerbation of selfishness and greed.
“The Super League will have no possible path of support in Portugal, and in my opinion all governing bodies should refuse it in a very clear way.”
Liverpool and Manchester United are reported to be in discussions about the project but former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger believes it would be a significant body blow for the Premier League.
“I don’t believe Europe is ready for that,” he told the Guardian. “This period actually is that the Premier League has a superiority.
“The other leagues try to destroy the advantage the Premier League has. For them the best thing to tame is to create a European league. If they get the agreement from the English big clubs it will happen.”
FIFA told the BBC on Wednesday it is “not aware of any agreement” that exists between Barcelona and a European Super League.
A statement added: “As we already said last week, the topic of a so-called ‘European Super League’ comes up every now and then and FIFA has no wish to comment further on this since there are already well-established football institutional structures to deal with it.”