Spanish court rules against UEFA in case over European Super League

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Soccer Football - UEFA Executive Committee Meeting - Nyon, Switzerland - December 4, 2019 General view inside the venue REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

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MADRID, July 1 (Reuters) - A Spanish court on Thursday ordered European soccer's governing body UEFA to cancel all legal sanctions imposed on Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus for planning the creation of the breakaway European Super League.

The court also told UEFA not to take any steps to try to exclude the three clubs, who are the last ones standing from the 12 teams originally behind the breakaway league, from its different competitions, including the Champions League.

The Madrid commercial court ruled that UEFA cannot force the organisers to formally dissolve the Super League and blocked the body from imposing a 100 million euro ($118.50 million) fine on clubs that sought to join the breakaway.

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England's Premier League and Italy's National Football Federation must also drop any sanctions on clubs that initially signed up to the project, the court said.

Announced in April, the Super League provoked a furore among fans, governments, players and managers and the project unravelled less than 48 hours after its launch when the six English clubs all withdrew.

Seeking to dissuade future breakaways, UEFA had sought to impose stiff penalties on the rebel clubs but suspended disciplinary proceedings in June.

Nine clubs - Manchester United, Liverpool, Manchester City, Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur, Arsenal, AC Milan, Inter Milan and Atletico Madrid - abandoned the project.

However, Barcelona, Real Madrid and Juventus have continued to defend the plan, releasing joint statements in May complaining of unacceptable third-party pressures and threats to abandon the project. read more

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Reporting by Belen Carreno, Inti Landauro, Nathan Allen and Richard Martin, editing by Ed Osmond

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