Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has become the latest ‘big six’ manager to discuss the European Super League proposals and suggested he is against the ‘closed shop’ plans from Europe’s elite.
The announcement from 12 of Europe’s leading clubs confirming their agreement to form a breakaway competition has dominated the headlines over the past two days, with the reaction one of outrage from the footballing world at a show of greed from the world’s wealthiest.
Each of the Premier League‘s ‘big six’ – Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham – are amongst the 12 teams to confirm their participation, the plans of which have been officially announced in a joint-statement.
The plans include guaranteed annual entry for the founding clubs, with just five places available for qualifiers on sporting merit in a scenario that threatens the integrity of the sport at the highest level.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has already voiced his stance against a Super League and ahead of tomorrow’s Premier League clash with Aston Villa, Guardiola has revealed he too is not in favour of the concept.
“It is not a sport when success is guaranteed or it doesn’t matter when you lose.” Guardiola told his pre-match press conference.
“It is uncomfortable for us because we do not have all of the information. I can only talk about what we know today.
“I support my club and I know the people. I’m part of this club, but I also have my own opinion, and I want it to be clear with the information.”
Guardiola added that he has not yet spoken to his players regarding the plans, with managers and players of ‘top six’ sides having been largely left in the dark by the club’s owners.
Asked if he had discussed the European Super League with his squad, the Spaniard added: “No because it is not yet breathing, it is an embryo that is not yet breathing, it is just a statement.
“We are going to play the Champions League next week and try to reach the final and next year we are going to play European competition because we deserve it, we won it on the pitch.
“We did our job and after the right people have the obligation the duty to clarify as soon as possible, clarify all around the world why this teams play and the others not, Ajax with four Champions League’s are not there.
“Everyone makes his own interest, the Premier League looks at his interest, and Uefa looks at his.
“This season is the most difficult one and we look for five subs but every team look for himself. Don’t say ‘big six’, this club in the toughest period in the world never fire one person and everyone is struggling in this situation.”