Government 'considering a wide range of sanctions' over European Super League plan

Oliver Dowden said the Government will "do whatever it takes to protect our national game” and prevent the so-called big six clubs joining a European Super League. Making a statement on the matter in the Commons, the Culture Secretary said he has spoken to the football authorities, adding: “My message for them was clear: they have our full backing. Dowden said the breakaway clubs’ actions had formally triggered the launch of a fan-led review, which had been promised within the Conservative Party’s election manifesto in 2019.

Video Transcript

OLIVER DOWDEN: I was appalled by the announcement made late last night that a handful of clubs are proposing to form their own breakaway European league. This is, of course, for football authorities to handle first. And today I have met with the Premier League, the Football Association, and the president of UEFA, whilst the sports minister has had another series of meetings with the Football Supporters Association.

The football authorities have robust rules in place to deal with this, and I know from my conversations with them today that they are rightly considering a wide range of sanctions and measures to stop this move in its tracks. My message to them was clear. They have our full backing. But Madam Deputy Speaker, be in no doubt, if they can't act, we will. We will put everything on the table to prevent this from happening.

We are examining every option, from governance reform to competition law, and mechanisms that allow football to take place. Put simply, we will be reviewing everything the government does to support these clubs to play. I have discussed these options with the prime minister this morning and we are working at pace across government and with football authorities. I want to reassure this House of a very robust response. We will do whatever it takes to protect our national game.