Since arriving in Germany four years ago, I have struggled against the morality of Chelsea’s rise to the top. It is ironic that I admire both the 50 + 1 rule of the Bundesliga and the role of supporters in German football society while supporting a club that has long since given up on involving its supporters in its activities.
I supported Chelsea as long as I was in love with the Beautiful Game – before Roman Abramovich came along and revolutionized not only the club, but football in England and across Europe. Without his money, we would never have been able to compete for the vast majority of the trophies we have won. We may not even exist as a club at all given the financial difficulties we were in at the time of purchase.
However, the Blues are my team, and that’s something impossible to change. On Sunday, however, the announcement of a European Super League made me think of the unthinkable – if my team is considering entering this competition, I feel like I will find myself with no choice but to turn my back .
Money in football has always been a subject of debate. Even in the 1950s and 1960s, English players demanded the abolition of the salary cap, while German players entered into secret deals to earn more as amateurs.
That said, the notion of the Super League is more than a step too far. Football is arguably the greatest sport in the world because anyone can really beat anyone. ‘Fairytale’ stories such as Leicester City’s Premier League win give hope that anything is possible. This success earned them a place in the Champions League, which they fully deserved.
These 12 clubs are trying to stop it, and that’s an abomination. In total disregard of their supporters, they want to set up a closed shop of greed and gluttony. The backlash has been overwhelming – it’s not a company with many backers outside of the Dirty Dozen. Given their lack of conversation and transparency, however, this is unlikely to be something they will be aware of. Personally, I feel betrayed, exploited and derided by a few rich, ignorant people who have absolutely no interest in the well-being of the game.
The project is a spit in the face of fans across Europe, including those on these 12 sides. Their contempt for the game knows no bounds and they are so far removed from the average fan. They’ve snatched the game away from us, and even if these blueprints fall and burn, they’re unlikely to be forgiven.
The biggest losers really are the supporters. UEFA and FIFA may have reacted quickly to express their outrage, but the former’s Champions League reforms and the latter’s willingness to send the World Cup to Qatar despite their despicable record in human rights.
The Bundesliga, as it has often done in other hot topics, has stood out in its position in the Super League. The DFL, as a whole, lamented the program, with Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund both declaring their intention to decline any invitation to join.
It makes me proud to be a fan of German football. The Premier League, although marketed as the best in the world, lost its soul a long time ago. Fans of the Bundesliga and German lower divisions, however, always made their voices heard, often with great success – the abolition of Monday night matches in the top flight, for example, was a direct result of protests across the country. .
The 50 + 1 rule means fans, quite frankly, matter. Something the founders of the Super League seem to have long forgotten. While I find it difficult to identify with my club at the moment, I can only thank the Bundesliga for their commitment to their supporters. The best league in the world just got even better.