Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City, Tottenham, Barcelona, Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Juventus, AC Milan and Inter Milan on Monday announced plans for a breakaway European Super League.
While the reaction to it from fans and former players has largely been negative, one of the more intriguing aspects has been to see what some of the active footballers and managers have to say about the issue:
“One thing I understand and that people think is not right is the competitiveness, I get that.
“I like the fact that West Ham might play Champions League next year. I don’t want them to, because I want us to be there, but I like that they have the chance.”
– Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp
“I have my opinion, but I’m not going to give it to you. After, you are going to say ‘Zidane never gets wet, he never says anything’. Why? Because what drives me is my job, this that I do from day to day.
“This is a question for one person: the president (Florentino Perez). Everyone has their opinion on it, but I’m not here to talk about this. I’m here to talk about La Liga, the Champions League... The rest is not my job.”
– Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane
“It doesn’t surprise me. In all walks of life, the powerful look after their own backs and don’t worry about the rest of us. They make the big earnings because of the opposition of the other teams. But in search of higher economic gains, they forget about us”
– Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa
“I am part of this club and I trust this club to make the right decisions. I think it’s too early to judge everything and it’s not my part. On my badge it says that everyone has to play their role. My role is to coach.”
– Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel
“We, the coaches, are ready to coach the clubs. I have no doubt that the club will make the best decision for what is best for the future of the club.”
– Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone
“There is a lot of questions. I can only say my personal opinion, I don’t like it and hopefully it doesn’t happen,”
– Liverpool midfielder James Milner
“It’s amazing the amount of opera that comes in to the game when somebody’s pockets are getting hurt, it’s a shame it’s not like that with racism.”
– Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford
“For me it’s absolutely unacceptable what is going on behind the scenes. Nobody wants it –- not even the fans of the clubs who want to go there want it.”
– Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl
(With AFP Inputs)
This article will be updated with more reactions.