Super League breakaway: Which players could be banned from playing for Wales?
Several players could be banned from playing for Wales if plans to form a breakaway European Super League go ahead.
Some of the world’s biggest football clubs have agreed to join the new competition that and UEFA has warned that their players that they could be denied the opportunity to represent their national teams.
Were a ban to come into force, it would impact a number of Wales’ top stars, including Gareth Bale, Aaron Ramsey, and Neco Williams, which would severely hamper the team’s ability to compete.
Premier League clubs Manchester United Liverpool, Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur have signed up to the plans for the competition that will rival the Champions League.
Spanish giants Real Madrid, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid have also agreed to join, as well as Juventus, AC Milan and Inter Milan from Italy.
No German or French clubs have yet to be associated with the breakaway, and there are reports that Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich declined to participate.
The list of Welsh players that could be impacted by a ban on playing international football include:
- Gareth Bale – Tottenham Hotspur
- Joe Rodon – Tottenham Hotspur
- Ben Davies – Tottenham Hotspur
- Neco Williams – Liverpool
- Daniel James – Manchester United
- Aaron Ramsey – Juventus
- Ben Woodburn – Liverpool
- Ethan Ampadu – Sheffield United (on loan from Chelsea)
The Super League said that they aimed to have 15 founding members and a 20-team league with five other clubs qualifying each season.
UEFA issued a strong statement jointly with English, Spanish and Italian leagues and football federations in response to the move by the clubs.
They said they were ready to use “all measures” to confront any breakaway and that any participating clubs would be banned from domestic leagues, such as the Premier League.
UEFA said: “The clubs concerned will be banned from playing in any other competition at domestic, European or world level, and their players could be denied the opportunity to represent their national teams.
“We thank those clubs in other countries, especially the French and German clubs, who have refused to sign up to this.
“We call on all lovers of football, supporters and politicians, to join us in fighting against such a project if it were to be announced. This persistent self-interest of a few has been going on for too long. Enough is enough.”
Former Manchester United player Gary Neville has called it “an absolute disgrace” and said the club owners were motivated by “pure greed”.