In a statement released on Tuesday, UEFA announced its intention to challenge Judge Manuel Ruiz de Lara, head of Madrid’s 17th Commercial Court. The aforementioned judge issued last April an order of precautionary measures in which he urged UEFA to paralyze the files and sanctions imposed on the 12 founding clubs of the European Super League, a competition that was to be organized outside the European body . Although technically they have not been able to leave the Superliga, nine of the clubs (Atlético, Milan, Inter, Manchester City, United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Tottenham and Chelsea) had already admitted financial sanctions and a statement by which they promised not to be part of future projects of competitions that were not supervised by UEFA. For their part, Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus have continued to litigate and have welcomed every move made by Judge Ruiz de Lara, including raising a preliminary ruling to the Court of Justice of the European Union, which must decide whether both UEFA and FIFA have a monopoly over the organization of competitions. The first entity had already paralyzed the open processes and had admitted the three rebel clubs in this edition of the Champions League.
However, the last order of the magistrate urged UEFA to archive the files open to Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus, in addition to annulling the financial sanctions against the other nine, under the risk of incurring disobedience. Given this, UEFA on Monday night issued a statement in which it complied with the mandate of Ruiz de Lara, but this Tuesday, the body chaired by the Slovenian Alexander Ceferin has issued another letter in which it not only challenges Judge Ruiz de Lara also clarifies that she will continue to defend her sanctioning rights as the institution that governs European football.
This is UEFA’s statement: “Following its announcement yesterday about the so-called ‘Super League’ project and the respective compliance measures that UEFA has taken, UEFA reaffirms its view that it has always acted in accordance with not only its Statutes and Regulations, but also with EU law, the European Convention on Human Rights and Swiss law in relation to this project of the so-called ‘Super League’. UEFA remains confident in its position – and will continue to defend it – in all relevant jurisdictions.
UEFA has always acted in good faith throughout the proceedings pending before a Court in Madrid. Consequently – and despite the fact that UEFA does not recognize the jurisdiction of the Madrid Court and firmly believes that it has always acted in full compliance with pending proceedings – UEFA today presented formal allegations to the Madrid Court evidencing its continued compliance with the orders. .
In addition, UEFA has filed a motion for the disqualification of the judge presiding over the current procedure, as it believes that there are significant irregularities in this procedure. In line with Spanish law – and in the fundamental interest of justice – UEFA expects the judge in question to step aside immediately until this motion is fully and adequately considered.
In addition, UEFA will also present a formal appeal to a higher court, the Madrid Provincial Court (Court of Appeal).
UEFA will continue to take all necessary measures, in strict accordance with EU and national law, in order to defend its interests and – most importantly – those of its members and all football stakeholders.