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Super League collapse: return to status quo is unacceptable

Appeasement of football’s richest clubs doesn’t work. The vultures circle, they’re always after more and they only get stronger when you feed their greed.

This time the cabal of billionaire owners overplayed their hand and their rapacious appetite for more united an unprecedented array of opponents. Fans across the entire game, players, managers, pundits, clubs, leagues, football associations across the continent, politicians, Prime Ministers and governments. Even the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge shared their concerns.

English club involvement in the Super League has collapsed and the concept itself teeters on the edge. At a continental level the FSA will continue to campaign with our friends at Football Supporters Europe to kill the competition for good. Agnelli’s ‘blood pact’ has no place in football.

The past 72 hours of white hot action and anger has killed domestic involvement in the Super League but that doesn’t mean fans can take their foot off the accelerator – a return to the status quo is unacceptable and will only allow these unscrupulous owners to regroup.

On Monday the Government announced the launch of its fan-led review and it is vital that all efforts are poured into that, with supporters front and centre, in order to rebalance the power structure of the domestic game.

There have been numerous reviews in the past with recommendations that football ignored or diluted. That cannot happen again. Reports suggested that the Prime Minister was considering a ‘legislative bomb’ to stop the involvement of domestic sides in the Super League.

We will work with all parties when it comes to securing the future of football and the fan-led review must adopt measures which stop this situation ever developing again.

Additionally it should consider a whole host of options such as removing barriers to partial or full supporter ownership, automatic supporter positions on boards, and implementation of something akin to Germany’s 50+1 rule which gives fans an enormous voice in that country.

Football is arguably the biggest expression of community and cultural identity on these shores and it needs to be treated with that respect. Tearing at the fabric of our football institutions damages not only football, but society more widely.

At the top clubs are allowed to treat their fans with contempt when it comes to ticket prices, kick-off times, support for the women’s game, wealth distribution and funding of grassroots. Supporter engagement has to be embedded into the decision making and power structure of all clubs.

Lower down the pyramid clubs disappear from existence thanks to a lack of transparency in ownership and financial oversight – leaving a trail of broken-hearted fans and indebted local businesses in their wake. These clubs need protection, financial controls and transparency of ownership.

Let’s make it happen – join the FSA and your local fan group today. Get involved

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