As the headline of the recent news, United have agreed on the new continental format designed to replace the Champions League alongside Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, and Tottenham. However, the Red Devils’ icon describes the plan as a declaration of "war on football".
Asked whether the involved clubs should face sanctions, Rio Ferdinand toldBT Sport
: "100%. I think this breakaway group of teams, this is a war on football. It’s a disgrace. It’s embarrassing. And it goes against everything football is about.
"There’s no consideration for the history, for the people in the different parts of the pyramid below the top, top teams that they’re trying to separate from.
"It’s a disgrace, I can’t believe it. How have they got the audacity to do it in the climate we’re in at the moment with the pandemic around the world?
"I think the element of being anti-competitive goes against everything football is about. Relegation, promotion, being rewarded for winning, being punished for not winning: these are things that add to the value of our game that we love.
"It shows me that these people have no idea what football is about. It’s purely a business transaction, that’s it. There’s no thought for anyone else in the pyramid, there’s no consideration at all. I can’t believe it"
On United’s involvement, Ferdinand added: "I’m embarrassed. There’s been so many things thrown at the owners over the past few years, but this situation now – to be a part of that group that want to break away and leave everybody for dead – that’s an embarrassment.
"I can’t believe it. I’m sorry, I’m a Man United fan, I love the club, but I can’t stand by and support something like that at all."
As a part of the controversial plan, a total of 20 clubs will participate in the mentioned tournament, including those from England, with AC Milan, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, Inter Milan, Juventus, and Real Madrid as founding members.
After playing in two ten-teamed groups, the top three in each pool will secure automatic qualification for the quarter-finals while teams in fourth and fifth will have to negotiate a play-off in to qualify for the final last-eight .positions