Fifa has threatened to ban 12 clubs who agreed to form a European Super League from playing in the Champions League, which could potentially result in an automatic winner.
Manchester City, Chelsea and Real Madrid — three of four semifinal teams in this season’s UCL — are among the big-name clubs who caused a ruckus on Monday, when news broke that they had committed to the controversial Super League, a new mid-week competition that would be governed by the founding clubs, rather than Uefa.
Paris St-Germain would be the only team left in play if the ban goes into effect ahead of the April 27 and 28 games.
Liverpool, Manchester United, Arsenal, Tottenham, AC Milan, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, Inter Milan and Juventus are also involved in the Super League.
This has put a big question mark around the outcome of the Champions League this season.
At time of writing, no competitions have been suspended, postponed or cancelled. If Uefa and Fifa decide to ban the Super League clubs from the UCL effective immediately, that could be an automatic win for Paris St-Germain, the only remaining team.
Uefa released a stern statement that they are committed to stopping the “cynical effort”.
“We will consider all measures available to us, at all levels, both judicial and sporting in order to prevent this [the Super League] happening. Football is based on open competitions and sporting merit; it cannot be any other way,” wrote Uefa.
“As previously announced by FIFA and the six Confederations, the clubs concerned will be banned from playing in any other competition at domestic, European or world level, and their players could be denied the opportunity to represent their national teams,” they continued.
Champions League future uncertain
Uefa, one of six continental confederations under Fifa, went on to thank “the French and German clubs” who refused to commit to the the Super League. These include PSG and Bayern Munich, who have been subject to praise in the hours since the announcement.
This is not the first time that Fifa threatened to ban those who commit to breakaway competitions. In January, they stated: “Any club or player involved in such a competition would as a consequence not be allowed to participate in any competition organised by FIFA or their respective confederation.”
If PSG do win the Champions League title due to an immediate disqualification of other clubs from Uefa and Fifa, it would be the first time in the history of the club.
The first leg of the semifinals is set to kick off on April 27 with Real Madrid v Chelsea and April 28 with PSG v Man City, with the second leg following on May 4 and 5.