The Super League lasted about 48 hours, turning the world of soccer on its head and back onto its feet again. What looked like a plan with plenty of support to forever modify the landscape of European soccer, while also damaging clubs in the process to benefit the wealthy, went up in flames on Tuesday and has since been suspended. With big clubs turning their back on the traditional competitions only to come crawling back, here is a timeline for how it went down with Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Tottenham, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus, Inter Milan and AC Milan having to later backtrack on their plans.
The first announcement
Afternoon of April 18
As reports began to circulate that an official announcement of the competition could arrive later in the day, reports also came out saying that several of the big English clubs were preparing an announcement explaining their intention to join, with the project led by Real Madrid boss Florentino Perez.
Then, late into the night in England, the announcement came from websites of the clubs involved.
Leading European football clubs announce new Super League competition.— Liverpool FC (@LFC) April 18, 2021
With that starting the fire, the topic for many went from a pipeline nightmare to an actual nightmare. Here we were with some of the world's biggest clubs joining a Super League with, quite frankly, clubs that haven't been all that super.
Atletico Madrid, Arsenal, Tottenham and Manchester City have zero Champions League titles, and Spurs haven't won the league since 1961, with their last trophy coming in 2008.
With many American owners backing the project, the future stability of the sport was in question and on the line.
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Will big boys Bayern Munich join?
Morning of April 19: With the Super League set to be between 20 teams, with 12 teams committed, questions began to come up as to who would be the other clubs to join? The most noticeable missing was Bayern Munich, the reigning Champions League winners and one of the biggest, best clubs in history.
The Bavarians, showing a spine and respecting in the integrity and history of the game, firmly rejected their invite.
#FCBayern says no to the Super League.— 🏆🏆🏆FC Bayern English🏆🏆🏆 (@FCBayernEN) April 20, 2021
FC Bayern München has a clear stance on the issue of the Super League. "Our members and fans reject a Super League," said president Herbert Hainer. "As FC Bayern, it is our wish and our aim that European clubs live the wonderful and emotional competition that is the Champions League, and develop it together with UEFA. FC Bayern says no to the Super League."
The uproar picks up big time
Morning of April 19: Fans increase their displays of disapproval at the stadiums of involved clubs just as two key figures of the European Club Association quit in Juventus president Andrea Agnelli and Manchester United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward.
Afternoon of April 19: UEFA boss Aleksander Ceferin firmly condemns the Super League, saying the participating clubs would be kicked out of the competitions, while also saying that players could be banned from participating in World Cups and Euros.
UEFA President Aleksander Čeferin 🗣️ pic.twitter.com/8HSaZNmtDv— Champions League on CBS Sports (@UCLonCBSSports) April 19, 2021
Leeds earn fans all over
Evening of April 19: Since the announcement, the first team in action were Liverpool. The Reds went to Elland Road to take on Leeds United and were "kindly" welcomed with the hosts wearing shirts that read "Football is for the fans."
Illan Meslier of Leeds United warming up for his game against Liverpool (a European Super League founding member) with a shirt that says “#UCL earn it. Football is for the fans.” pic.twitter.com/oBsuKCKG2H— Nico Cantor (@Nicocantor1) April 19, 2021
Leeds scored late to earn a 1-1 draw that felt like a win for all those against the Super League.
The fans get Chelsea-Brighton delayed
Afternoon of April 20: Chelsea were prepared to face Brighton at home in Premier League play, but the match was delayed due to the amount of fans preventing the buses of the teams to enter the grounds. Chants began as the Blues' supporters were aiming to help save the sport, concerned with the consequences of their team joining the Super League.
“IT’S NOT FOOTBALL ANYMORE...” 😳— Champions League on CBS Sports (@UCLonCBSSports) April 20, 2021
Afternoon of April 20: Chelsea's legendary goalkeeper Petr Cech comes out to pleased with the fans to allow the teams in:
Petr Cech pleading the Chelsea fans to allow the team bus in. 😳— Champions League on CBS Sports (@UCLonCBSSports) April 20, 2021
🎥 @phillipjames4 pic.twitter.com/hg77CbJgWo
Beginning buzz about Chelsea dropping out
Afternoon of April 20: Reports across England began to circulate that clubs were preparing to pull out. It was first reported that Chelsea were preparing documentation to withdraw, which led fans to began chanting "champions" in Spanish:
Scenes at Stamford Bridge as Chelsea fans react to the news.— Champions League on CBS Sports (@UCLonCBSSports) April 20, 2021
(🎥 via @oliver_todd)pic.twitter.com/manjyTmJHI
The first domino to fall
Afternoon of April 20: Manchester City become the first club to officially announce they are pulling out of the proposed Super League:
BREAKING: Man City officially become the first team to pull out of the proposed European Super League 🚨 pic.twitter.com/mQlzIMkLpv— Champions League on CBS Sports (@UCLonCBSSports) April 20, 2021
Other clubs then followed, including all of the English ones.
Night of April 20:m The Super League suspends their current plans for the competition to revisit what their next steps will be after fans, players, managers and more protested the creation and implementation of the competition.
BREAKING: The Super League release an official statement stating they are reconsidering the appropriate steps to reshape the project. pic.twitter.com/zuueIEYK4N— Champions League on CBS Sports (@UCLonCBSSports) April 20, 2021
Since the news of it being suspended, more clubs have officially withdrawn, including both Inter Milan and AC Milan.
Wednesday: Clubs have also began to apologize for their involvement, including Liverpool's owner John Henry and Manchester United's Joel Glazer.
Here's Henry's message:
John W Henry's message to Liverpool supporters. pic.twitter.com/pHW3RbOcKu— Liverpool FC (@LFC) April 21, 2021
Now more clubs are forced to apologize in an attempt to save face and limit more brand damage than they already have caused.
In the end, what a crazy of couple days, both of which belong in the review mirror with the entirety of 2020 or in the trash bin with all plans for a Super League that threatened the very elite existence of the world's most popular sport.