Meet the new Premier League power brokers as Newcastle United fans recall takeover opposition

Has there been a power shift in the Premier League?

Thursday, 22nd April 2021, 4:45 pm

The most powerful clubs in the English top flight have long threatened to go it alone if they don’t get their own way.

However, the likes of Manchester United and Liverpool no longer have that option following the collapse of the proposed European Super League (ESL) after just two days of protests.

Yes, the Premier League needs its biggest clubs, but those same big clubs need the Premier League.

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Sheffield United owner Prince Abdullah, left.

This should put an end to any talk of the so-called “big six” taking an even bigger chunk of future revenues – and underpin the one club, one vote principle on which the league was formed.

Newcastle United fans, of course, will remember that there was opposition from a number of these clubs to the proposed Saudi Arabia-backed takeover of their club last year. Was it seen as a potential threat to their dominance?

Sheffield United owner Prince Abdullah has given a revealing insight into the solidarity of the 14 clubs not involved in the ESL proposal.

This same solidarity was evident last year when the shameful Project Big Picture power grab, which would have given the six special voting rights along with “long-term shareholders” Everton, West Ham United and Southampton, was defeated.

“We have a WhatsApp group only for 14 teams without the big six,” said Prince Abdullah. “We had that last year. Because the five substitutions mattered, and the big six will get the most benefit from that, because of the benches they had compared to ours.

“It’s just the CEOs. Yesterday, 11 of us were discussing the recent events, and they all completely rejected the European Super League. We are waiting on Wolves and Leicester, and I forget the third team.

“I have to remark about the Premier League they usually care about the big six opinions other than the 14. The known big six are Man United, Man City, Arsenal, Tottenham, Liverpool, and Chelsea.

“First, it’s money, then popularity among fans. I guess that is the reason for sure – money and popularity.”

Money and popularity are fine, but these clubs still need a domestic league to play in – and the rest of the teams, thankfully, have learnt to stand their ground.

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