The annual FIFA Congress voted in favour of a proposal on Friday to investigate the feasibility of staging the men’s and women’s competitions biennially, rather than every four years, as it is now.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had said the aim was to reduce new daily cases to below 5,000 and also revive the crucial tourism industry
The project “lived” just for a few days after it was announced, apparently crumbling under the pressure of the widespread criticism and the resistance of governing bodies
Manchester City and Chelsea are currently due to meet in Istanbul for the showpiece event on May 29, but Turkey has been placed on the UK Government’s “red list” after a surge in coronavirus cases.
The statement said the 12 founding clubs have suffered “unacceptable third-party pressures, threats, and offences” to abandon the project and “therefore desist from their right and duty to provide solutions to the football ecosystem.”
European football’s governing body said it had agreed the increase from 23 players “to mitigate the risks of teams facing a shortage of available players for certain matches due to possible positive Covid-19 test results and subsequent quarantine measures”.
UEFA said this followed agreement with Polish authorities.
The withdrawals by Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham came just 48 hours after the league’s unveiling late on Sunday following a furious response from fans and officials.
The ruling, from a mercantile court in Madrid, said the soccer governing bodies must refrain from “directly or indirectly” hindering the creation of the breakaway league.
“Taking the total number of teams from 32 to 36 in the UEFA Champions League, the biggest change will see a transformation from the traditional group stage to a single league stage including all participating teams.
Sources told dpa that clubs from England, Italy and Spain were part of the latest plan, and news reports spoke of a league comprising 20 teams, which could start in 2022.
A decision had initially been expected on March 31, but was delayed due to some clubs within the European Club Association seeking a greater say on commercial matters for the new competition.
Aubameyang’s Arsenal is in a tough spot after their disappointing draw against Slavia Prague at home last week.
In a statement, European football’s governing body said the decision to allow five subs at the delayed tournament had been taken as “the rule is already in place for the World Cup qualification matches that will run from March 2021 to March 2022”.
Disgraced Blatter has been hit with a new suspension of six years and eight months, while former FIFA general secretary Jerome Valcke has received a similar ban, along with a fine of £780,000.
Due to the coronavirus travel restrictions, a number of UEFA Champions League and Europa League games have been switched to new venues by Europe’s football governing body UEFA
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side were due to travel to Spain for the first leg of the last-32 tie on February 18, but coronavirus restrictions in that country have forced a change.
Sources told ESPN in October that any breakaway tournament, which would effectively replace the Champions League, could be doomed to failure as it would struggle to get crucial approval from governing bodies.
All three English sides will be seeded in the draw at UEFA’s Nyon headquarters, meaning they will avoid champions Bayern Munich and other big guns such as 13-time winners Real Madrid, Juventus, Paris St Germain and Borussia Dortmund.
The case involving the pair has to date centred around a CHF2 million (£1.6million/$2.2million/€1.8million) payment made by Blatter to Platini in 2011.