Andrea Agnelli, a former chairman of Juventus, reaffirmed his support for a European Super League during his farewell address to the Italian team.
In the midst of a police investigation into the club’s moves, the 47-year-old and the other members of the Juventus board all abruptly quit in November.
“European football needs a new system,” Agnelli stated.
“Otherwise it risks a decrease in favour of a single dominant league which within a few years will attract all the talent of European football within its league, completely marginalising the other leagues and the others are already marginalised.”
The ESL plan, which included 12 clubs when it was first revealed in April 2021, was abandoned after just 72 hours when nine clubs withdrew in the face of fan outrage and objections from regulating authorities.
The ESL, which claimed Uefa and Fifa violated European Union competition law by preventing its foundation, has not been withdrawn by Juventus, Barcelona, or Real Madrid.
“When I was president of the ECA (European Clubs Association) and of the Uefa executive committee, the analysis was evident,” said Agnelli.
“There was no club sustainability, a vertical polarisation of interest towards only two leagues, access to very risky financial instruments and fan disaffection.
“The proposal at the time was the creation of a league system with access different from the classic ones. This proposal was made in 2019.
“If I personally wanted to maintain my privileged situation, I would not have taken the decisions of April 2021.”
Uefa and Fifa’s activities were “compatible with EU competition law,” according to advocate general Athanasios Rantos in a report issued by the European Court of Justice in December.
A 15-member Grand Chamber will render a decision in the following spring.
Andrea Agnelli continued: “The hope is that the European Court of Justice recognises professional sport as an industry, since the turnover of football is 55 billion euros (£48bn).”
“I thank Real Madrid and Barcelona who, together with Juventus, had the courage to face the threats from Uefa.”
Agnelli said the aforementioned on Wednesday at a Juventus shareholders meeting where a new board of directors was ratified and he was succeeded as chairman by Gianluca Ferrero.
The Italian powerhouses won nine straight Serie A championships under Agnelli’s 13-year reign, but they finished fourth last season and suffered a record-breaking loss of 254 million euros (£220 million).
Juventus, a publicly traded company in Italy, is under investigation for allegedly giving investors incorrect financial information and generating invoices for fictitious transactions.
Agnelli and the recently-resigned vice president Pavel Nedved are two of the people being looked into.
Any impropriety has been denied by the club.
The Italian Football Federation (FIGC) initiated a parallel inquiry in October that is also looking into other clubs.
Andrea Agnelli is an Italian businessman who was born on 6 December 1975.
Since May 2010 until his resignation in November 2022, Agnelli presided over Italian football club Juventus F.C. The Turin Public Prosecutor’s Office had initiated a Financial Accounts Probe after receiving information that suggested intentional wrong-doing in accounting.
Agnelli was appointed to the UEFA Executive Committee in 2015 and previously held the positions of Executive Member and Chairman of the European Club Association.
He comes from the family of industrialist Agnelli. Additionally, he serves on the boards of Stellantis and Exor.
European Super League
Twenty European football clubs, twelve of which would have been the league’s founding members, would have competed in the debut season of the European Super League (ESL), formally known as The Super League.
It was run by the European Super League Company, S.L., a company founded to compete with the UEFA Champions League, the top club football competition in Europe run by UEFA.
The European Super League, which was announced in April 2021, was met with strong criticism from supporters, players, managers, legislators, and other clubs in England, the nation with the highest representation in the initiative with six teams.
UEFA, FIFA, and certain national governments were also against it.
Since only elite teams from a select few European nations would have participated, the ESL received a great deal of criticism for being elitist and lacking in competition.
Later, the ESL’s surviving members declared they would restructure the project into a more open structure.
Three days later, the ESL made the decision to halt operations while a legal battle developed.