Council of Europe: The Premier League can be devastating to football

A sign with the message “Take us back to Arsenal” was placed at the gates of the club’s Emirates Stadium in London (UK) this Tuesday. EFE / ANDY RAIN

Strasbourg (France), April 21 (EFE). – Deputy Secretary-General of the Council of Europe, Bjorn Berg, expressed his concern on Wednesday about the “devastating impact” that the “unfortunate initiative” of the Super League could have on football. Sports “as we know it”.
Thus, the Council of Europe joins the voices opposing the project to create the league, initially by twelve European clubs, which were expressed by European governments, sports organizations and institutions.
In a letter addressed to the President of the Partial Extended Agreement on Sport (EPAS) of the Council of Europe, Alexander Husting, Berg insisted that “it is important and at the appropriate time to organize an urgent dialogue between public authorities and the sports movement”.
This exchange of views would help “address the potential implications of such an unfortunate initiative and how the future European Sport Charter will protect a value-based sport”.
He adds that it is essential to discuss how principles of solidarity, sporting merits, openness to competitions, sporting integrity and inclusiveness can help governments and sporting organizations protect sport.
For Berg, this protection is necessary when “initiatives emerge that completely deny the sport’s governing bodies their essential regulatory role”.
Since 2007, the EPAS agreement has strengthened cooperation between sports authorities, federations and NGOs for better management of sport, ensuring that it is governed by more inclusive and safer ethical standards.
It includes 37 of the 47 member states of the Council of Europe, plus Belarus, Israel and Morocco. They do not belong to the EPAS Spain, Germany, the United Kingdom, Sweden and Denmark, among other countries of the organization.

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