The trial of the European Super League begins
The European Court is in session on Monday and Tuesday with the hearing between UEFA and FIFA. The sentence expected in a few months.
The world of football is witnessing a decisive episode starting on Monday 11 July in Luxembourg. The two-day hearing in the high-profile European Super League case begins in the European Court of Justice with the uncertainty of how it may affect the future of the competition. The request for a preliminary ruling from Madrid’s Mercantile Court to the ECJ is to resolve the conflict between European Superleague Company S. L., UEFA and FIFA.
The Super League, a private company made up of 12 clubs (of which only 3 are publicly still actively in the project - Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus), are suing the other two, UEFA and FIFA, based in Switzerland, for infringement of articles 101 and 102 of the TFEU (Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union). They are accused of having a monopoly on the authorization and organization of international competitions, of the exclusive exploitation of their rights and of threatening clubs and players who participate in the Super League with sanctions.
Super League vs UEFA/FIFA
During the hearing, the referring court will put six questions to the ECJ on the interpretation or validity of the provision of EU law in relation to this matter. The Chamber will be made up of 15 judges from among the 27 of the Court. An Attorney General has also been assigned to the case. Only lawyers can attend the hearing, so the likes of Florentino Pérez, Gianni Infantino and Aleksander Ceferin are not expected (although the latter is actually a lawyer by profession). The trial will be in Spanish.
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After the written and oral presentations, the Court will proceed to the corresponding questions. Although the hearing is held across Monday and Tuesday, the outcome will not be immediate. The Advocate General must first issue a non-binding opinion to the Court which can take weeks. The judges then deliberate on it and can make any changes they want.
The sentence will come after all this analysis. The Court’s deliberation average is over 16 months from the start of the request for a preliminary ruling. In this case, calculating from the date of the petition (May 27, 2021), the sentence could come out around the end of September or the beginning of October.
Since the Bosman Law, football has not faced an earthquake of such magnitude. Its classic structure is at stake. Super League against UEFA and FIFA.