Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has revealed that he received a personal apology from the owners of the club over the events concerning the failed attempt at creating a breakaway ‘European Super League’.
The owners of the so-called ‘top six’ Premier League clubs – Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool and Chelsea – had agreed on the idea under a considerable veil of secrecy, with managers and players later revealing they knew nothing, or very little, about the things that went on behind the scenes. Most of the players found out about it after official announcements of the project were put out on Sunday.
As for Arteta, he says he had found out about it just before it all happened.
“I found out just a little bit before the news was leaked,” he said. “And then everything was completely out of control and the world reacted in a really unified manner. There was not really time to think about it, reflect and evaluate or anything because by the time that was out, a big tsunami already came onto it and basically killed it.”
Having been briefly told about it just beforehand by Vinai Venkatesham, Arteta says the CEO was ‘very transparent with him’, and the manager understood the reasons behind the secrecy as neither him nor the players were involved in making the controversial decision.
Arteta also stressed that this whole situation showed clearly how important the fans are for this sport. Supporter groups related to all six clubs involved were very vocal and unanimous in their unconditional condemnation of the project, with some placing banners outside stadiums and requesting that those on the stands be removed, while others gathered outside the grounds to protest directly.
Life in the football world is not supposed to resume as normal, though it remains to be seen to what extent that will prove possible. No punishments have been dealt to the six clubs as of yet, either by domestic institutions or the UEFA, even though there have been strong calls for it.