Football

La Liga chief Tebas points finger at Fifa president Infantino

La Liga chief Javier Tebas has accused Fifa president Gianni Infantino of supporting the launch of a breakaway European Super League despite world football's governing body being officially opposed to the project.

In an interview with AFP and The Sun newspaper in the UK, Tebas called on Infantino to deny he is in favour of the controversial breakaway competition that would transform the landscape of European football.

Tebas claims Infantino has been "working on" and "encouraging" its formation, and said Fifa's president could even be given a role with the new league once it is set up.

When contacted by AFP, Fifa referred to its statement on Jan 21 which was signed by Infantino and said "such a competition would not be recognised by either Fifa or the respective confederation".

BANNED

It added any club or player participating would be banned from competitions organised by Fifa, such as the World Cup, although it is unclear if such a move would be legal.

Yet Tebas believes Infantino is in favour of a Super League and has even been helping clubs to organise it.

"Fifa as an institution has been very clear but Infantino is not Fifa the institution, he is the president and he should clarify his position," Tebas said.

"It is obvious that he has been involved in the meetings. He has been working on it and even been encouraging them to set it up... He is not against it... He thought the project was good."

When asked why Infantino would support a European Super League, Tebas said: "Maybe he has a position in this future Super League that he is going to take up."

Documents containing details of the Super League, first reported this month by British newspaper The Times, proposed a 20-club tournament with 15 permanent members.

It would include the English Premier League's "Big Six", as well as La Liga giants Real Madrid and Barcelona, with those clubs guaranteed billions of euros in revenue.

Tebas believes the documents show Infantino was involved in discussions.

"There is the mention of a codename 'W01' which clearly refers to Mr Infantino. That is his codename," said Tebas.

"So he should urgently clarify his personal position, to explain why he was at some of the meetings and encouraged the project...If he comes out and says it's not true and can prove it, I will apologise.

"When I say something, it is for a good reason. I know the truth."

As the head of the Spanish league, Tebas has been one of the most vocal opponents of the Super League project, which he said has been driven by Real, as well Liverpool, Manchester United and AC Milan.

Barcelona's outgoing president, Josep Maria Bartomeu, said in October the club had also signed up.

"While I am in charge of the Spanish league, it's not going to happen," Tebas said. - AFP

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