Juventus are in the process of withdrawing from the breakaway European Super League.
The club said Tuesday it informed La Liga partners Barcelona and Real Madrid of its intention to abandon the ill-fated project. The proposed league lost the majority of its 12 founding clubs 48 hours after its launch in April 2021 amid uproar from fans and the threat of UEFA sanctions.
The Bianconeri insisted UEFA hadn’t pressured them into any decision. They could face further discipline from the governing body after being docked 10 points in Serie A for financial irregularities.
AC Milan, Atletico Madrid, Arsenal, Chelsea, Inter Milan, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, and Tottenham Hotspur initially backed the 20-team Super League as an alternative to the Champions League, the lucrative annual knockout competition for Europe’s top teams. Each of the 12 founding members would’ve had a permanent place in the competition, all but creating a closed league for the richest clubs.
Nine of the 12 teams backed out when UEFA vowed to ban them from all of its competitions. Thousands of fans protested the movement as a money grab. Several owners, including the Glazer family, which owns Manchester United, are still recovering from the public-relations disaster the proposed league created.
Juventus maintained their participation at the behest of former club president Andrea Agnelli, who criticized UEFA’s financial model as unfair to the biggest teams. However, Agnelli resigned from his position in November as prosecutors accelerated their investigation into Juventus for false accounting.
It’s unclear whether Barcelona and Madrid – heated rivals on the pitch – will continue to proceed with plans. Madrid president Florentino Perez previously said football would “die” without the Super League.