Catalonia’s fight for independence could lead to the creation of a European Super League, say senior football insiders.
Barcelona are at war with La Liga over the disputed weekend referendum and many believe they could walk away from the Spanish league altogether.
That could kickstart a new continent-wide ‘super league’, with the likes of Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Spurs also monitoring the situation closely.
Real Madrid, PSG, Monaco and other major clubs in Germany, Italy, Portugal and Russia are also keeping a close eye on developments.
A source told The Sun: “The idea of a Europe-wide super league has interested the big clubs for years – and if Barcelona walk away from La Liga, it could kickstart the whole thing.
“No club in Europe would want to be left out, but a top tier of around 20 teams would be needed to really get things going.
“It’s the inevitable next step in world football as the big clubs look to earn even more money for themselves and break into lucrative new markets.”
The clubs would earn billions of pounds in TV revenue, as they would be able to name their price for the all-star fixtures that would likely include games being played in the USA and China.
Last month, Manchester United’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward revealed that digital giants such as Facebook and Amazon will “absolutely” be in bidding war for Premier League TV rights in the future.
Woodward said the media giants would enter the bidding war when the next round of television rights come up for tender – and they would be even more interested in a European Super League that would allow them to connect with fans all over the globe.
The source added: “The bigger Premier League clubs have expressed dissatisfaction with the way the current TV deals are structured, and believe they are owed a more generous slice of what’s on offer.
“They would be delighted if they were able to sell their own individual rights as that’s where the next wave of big money is. A European Super League gives them the chance to do just that.”
Forget the Champions League, there could be a bigger fish in town.