KEIR RADNEDGE REPORTS: FIFA president Gianni Infantino has assured European football bosses that he stands four-square behind them in countering the disruption threatened by the breakaway Super League.
The head of the world football federation told the annual congress of European governing body UEFA of FIFA’s “disapproval” of the project which erupted over the weekend.
Infantino avoided using the verbal ferocity of UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin, possibly out of an awareness that the 12 rebel clubs remain members of the football family and that FIFA may yet have a crucial role to play in negotiating some sort of settlement or, at the least, truce.
He said he had planned to address UEFA on a wide range of governance and administrative issue but had torn up that speech after the weekend events.
Infantino said: “The last 48 hours obviously changed everything and it seems there is only one topic which is of interest, this Super League project.
“Let me be extremely clear: FIFA is an organisation built on the true values of sport with the pyramid and we can only and strongly disapprove the creation of a Super League which is a closed shop, a breakaway from the current institutions, which is outside the system.”
FIFA fully supported UEFA and European football in standing up for its values and solidarity against “the short-term financial gain of some.”
He said: “People need to think not only about their shareholders but of all the people, all the fans, all those who have contributed to create what European football is today. It goes back more than 100 years.
“We need to protect the European sports model, to protect the club competitions, to protect the national teams so that football can survive all over the world.
“If some elect to go their own way then they must live with the consequences of their choice. They are responsible for their choice. Concretely this means either you’re in or you’re out. You cannot be half in and half out.”