By and large it is agreed that the European Super League was a terrible mistake, but it’s all resolved now, the clubs have paid their fines to Uefa for breach of rules and some fans are demanding seats on the boards.
Except… in football nothing is ever quite what it might seem. And this for two quite separate reasons which the media are not really wanting to talk about. For there is the African Super League, which Mr Infantino is pushing through as a way of giving Fifa power, for the first time, over a club competition. And the last thing that Fifa and Infantino wanted was to have a European Super League overshadow his African Super League project. At least not until Fifa can run that too.
But there are also mumblings happening in the English media to the effect that the European version of the affair, which Fifa hated because it was not running the show, is reforming itself. And the reason for that is desperation. A number of clubs in the SuperLeague are in real financial trouble.
As ever most of the British media won’t touch football stories unless they are officially sanctioned by Fifa, to whom they will always bend the knee in return for tickets to big matches. And that is why the African Super League is not big news yet. Infantino is not quite ready.
Meanwhile the Daily Mail broke ranks and ran the headline “Desperate Super League organisers ‘believe a modified version of the hated competition can still go ahead’ with England’s Big Six amid claims the English giants ‘still haven’t formally left’ the botched plan.”
As ever much of this writing ends with the getout phrase “according to a report,” meaning “don’t blame us if this is wrong”, but the picture they paint does link with the observations of Fifa’s work in taking over all of African football, and Fifa’s worry that this project would be overshadowed by a European super league arising too soon.
But the financial disaster that is affecting most of the clubs in the SuperLeague both as a result of previous mismanagement and the pandemic is not going away. These are the clubs like Barcelona, which are called “too big to fail” and well as being “too much in debt to continue”.
However the club owners go further and say, “football can’t survive in its current form. simply because of the debt.” Meanwhile rulings in the European Court of Justice have established precedents which have allowed such developments and breakaways, and there is no doubt surely that if a big club is about to fail, with SuperLeague being the only option for keeping it going, that is what is going to happen.
What now tips this over the edge now is FIFA’s African Super League. This story has been followed in detail by Philippe Auclair at Josimar Football and focuses on the way CAF top officials have all been replaced with Fifa’s own preferred personnel.
It started on 24 May 2021 when over a dozen CAF senior staff were sacked without warning; Fifa backed officials were put in place. And all without warning, without interviews, without explanation, but with the statement that the severance payments they were entitled to would not be paid unless they signed total non-disclosure agreements. The entire CAF administration was taken down in one move.
Infantino then installed Véron Mosengo-Omba as his man to run the show – and all following a clever move by Fifa which changed the regs so that non-Africans can hold senior positions in the CAF.
Now if you have followed our story on the battles between the Swiss state and Infantino, you will know how much of Fifa is run by people who don’t have qualifications to do the job, but come from the same part of Switzerland as Infantino. The same is true of Luca Piazza who worked (without any qualifications for the job) for Infantino inside the Fifa Audit & Compliance team, and who grew up a few doors away from Infantino in the village of Trelex.
Piazza became the effective ‘Fifa General Delegate For Africa’ on 1 August 2019, overseeing all decisions from which point Fifa took over African football directly.
Infantino went to a CAF meeting on 15 May 2021 to discuss a report on African football by PricewaterwaterhouseCoopers which highlighted the corruption (although as PWC admitted, without interviewing anyone or having all the relevant documentation).
PwC themselves were aware of the limitations of their work, which basically blamed individuals for failings in African football, rather than in the whole structure of the organisation and suggested the need to bring in outsiders – from Europe. As if Fifa had never had problems with its European employees from Infantino downward.
If you would like the amazing full set of gory details you should read http://josimarfootball.com/the-turn-of-the-screw/
Beware incoming: The Fifa European Super League: the winners to play the winners of the Fifa African Super League on a TV set in your sitting room.
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- Positive injury news for Arsenal ahead Monday’s game with Sheffield United
- Arsenal’s finances stay secure but we can expect more price rises for fans
- How a 14th monk described Arsenal’s failure to buy Moisés Caicedo and Mykhailo Mudryk