Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham are among 12 clubs who have agreed to join a new European Super League (ESL).
In a seismic move for European football, the Premier League clubs will join AC Milan, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, Inter Milan, Juventus and Real Madrid.
The ESL said the founding clubs had agreed to establish a “new midweek competition” with teams continuing to “compete in their respective national leagues”.
It says the inaugural season “is intended to commence as soon as practicable” and “anticipated that a further three clubs will join” the breakaway.
The ESL says it also plans to launch a women’s competition as soon as possible after the men’s tournament starts.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Uefa and the Premier League condemned the move to launch a European Super League when news of it broke on Sunday.
World governing body Fifa has previously said it would not recognise such a competition and any players involved in it could be denied the chance to play at a World Cup.
Uefa, Europe’s governing body, reiterated this warning on Sunday when it said players involved would be banned from all other competitions at domestic, European or world level and could be prevented from representing their national teams.
After the Super League was announced, Fifa expressed its “disapproval” of the proposed competition and called on “all parties involved in heated discussions to engage in calm, constructive and balanced dialogue for the good of the game”.
In a statement, the ESL said: “Going forward, the founding clubs look forward to holding discussions with Uefa and Fifa to work together in partnership to deliver the best outcomes for the new league and for football as a whole.”
What is the proposed format?
The league will have 20 teams – the 12 founding members plus the three unnamed clubs they expect to join soon and five sides who qualify annually according to their domestic achievements.
Under the proposals, the ESL campaign would start in August each year, with midweek fixtures, and the clubs would be split into two groups of 10, playing each other home and away.
The top three in each group would qualify for the quarter-finals, with the teams in fourth and fifth playing a two-legged play-off for the two remaining spots.
From then on, it would have the same two-leg knockout format used in the Champions League before a single-leg final in May at a neutral venue.
The ESL says it will generate more money than the Champions League and would result in a greater distribution of revenue throughout the game.
What do the Super League leaders say?
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez is the first chairman of the ESL and says “we will help football at every level”.
“Football is the only global sport in the world with more than four billion fans and our responsibility as big clubs is to respond to their desires,” he added.
Juventus chairman Andrea Agnelli has resigned from the Uefa executive committee and as chairman of the European Club Association (ECA), which had pushed the planned Champions League reforms.
He said the 12 clubs had “come together at this critical moment, enabling European competition to be transformed, putting the game we love on a sustainable footing for the long-term future”.
Manchester United co-chairman Joel Glazer will be a vice-chairman of the Super League.
He said: “By bringing together the world’s greatest clubs and players to play each other throughout the season, the Super League will open a new chapter for European football, ensuring world-class competition and facilities, and increased financial support for the wider football pyramid.”