Arsenal want to become part of any talks about a European Super League – but refuse they would break away in the Premier League if a brand new competition comes to fruition.
The threat of such a move is back on the schedule following German magazine Der Spiegel published a story that claimed a number of Europe’s most important clubs – unhappy at having to share European broadcast revenues using the wider football household – have been plotting to form a rival tournament.
According to emails and documents got from your whistle-blowing platform Football Leaks,” Der Spiegel claimed 11 clubs, including Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Arsenal may signal up to some US-style closed league, together with five big names invited to create it a 16-team competition.
The league would cause disruption to the football version that is present, together with the Premier League and Champions League enduring as a result.
Vinai Venkatesham, managing director at Arsenal, is eager for the team in any conversations enclosing a league that is brand new to participate – but insists the club have no intention of departing the game supporting.
“Arsenal aren’t or haven’t been interested in playing in any contest that simplifies the Premier League,” he explained. “The Premier League is the world’s top league from the major game, we don’t want to take action to hurt that the Premier League.
“When folks talk about the European Super League, that covers a very big spectrum. Folks believe this is what we’re speaking about and jump to a end of this spectrum – but actually often it is only in where we are now, a development.
“I see the posts that Arsenal want to breakaway, we never want to do any of this. But we have to recognise we wouldn’t be liable or we have to be in these discussions.
“We must be at the discussions, it doesn’t automatically mean we support them.”
Venkatesham was appointed into the role of director at the Emirates Stadium following chief executive Ivan Gazidis left for AC Milan\.
As a part of the reshuffle, Raul Sanllehi chose the position of the head of soccer of Arsenal.
The Spaniard was part of a class which initially looked during his time at a similar function in Barcelona into a European Super League.
But he believes any such revamp is still a way off and that renegotiating the terms of their Champions League with UEFA has put off any threat of a breakaway division.
“Basically, as we’re responsible for top European clubs, the ECA (European Club Association) needed to look to all the choices for the near future,” he said.
“Among these, obviously, could have been the possibility of a European Super League. It was a conversation we did not conceal from anybody not even from the ECA nightclubs that are bigger\.
“We looked into that in two ways: a method of exploring the true possibility and how it would enable us to negotiate with UEFA below the new terms because every cycle we’ll pay back the Memorandum of Understanding.
“At the end of the day the outcome was the finest possible because we turned into a new deal with UEFA within the system that protected the national leagues.”
Asked if he believed a Super League would occur, Sanllehi replied:”Maybe not in the brief term since we have a deal with UEFA right now – but I do not understand what the future will deliver since the near future writes itself.
“However, what I can guarantee you is, we all think the present situation is an optimal situation we (Arsenal) are very proud to be in the Premier League.”