European Super League: Manchester United fans protest against Glazer family

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Thousands of Manchester United supporters gathered outside Old Trafford on Saturday to protest against the club’s owners for their involvement in the European Super League (ESL).

United were one of the 12 founding members of the competition before withdrawing on Tuesday.

Protestors were calling for the Glazer family to leave the club.

It follows protests by Chelsea and Arsenal fans against respective owners Roman Abramovich and Stan Kroenke.

United co-chairman Joel Glazer would have been a vice-chairman of the European Super League before United withdrew on Tuesday after a furious backlash.

On Wednesday, he issued a letter of apology admitting the club made a mistake joining the proposed breakaway competition.

‘A lesson on how not to launch a campaign’

Speaking to BBC Football Focus, former Arsenal co-owner David Dein said the ESL project was “immoral and abhorrent”.

“The Super League project is a lesson on how not to launch a campaign,” Dein told BBC One. “Every step of the way they got it wrong.

“All the way through there was no-one ever speaking up for them to defend them. In all my years in football I’ve never seen something so major start and finish so quickly.

“The project itself was immoral, abhorrent; it was awful and unedifying. The good news is that it did bond the whole nation, which is something very positive.

“The fans particularly, the managers, the players the media and even the prime minster and Prince William – everyone got together within 24 hours to stop it. I’ve never seen that in my life before and was quite remarkable.”

What has happened at each club?
As well as their protest outside Old Trafford on Saturday, United fans also entered the club’s training ground at Carrington on Thursday to protest against the Glazer family’s ownership.

They carried banners saying ‘Glazers Out’ and ‘51% MUFC’.

Earlier on Saturday, there were also pockets of Liverpool supporters protesting outside Anfield against Fenway Sports Group, the club’s US-based owner, for its role in the ESL.

However, many Reds fans also lined the streets to applaud the team bus and show their support for manager Jurgen Klopp and his players, ahead of their lunchtime game with Newcastle.

Around 1,000 Chelsea fans gathered outside Stamford Bridge in protest before their game against Brighton on Tuesday, with the club still signed up to the competition.

Former Blues goalkeeper Petr Cech, now the club’s technical and performance advisor, could be seen pleading with the crowd to disperse so the team coaches could enter the ground, which led to the game being delayed by 15 minutes.

Supporters were seen cheering when news broke of Chelsea’s decision to withdraw from the ESL before the game kicked off with Brighton.

Across London on Friday discontent with club owners was shown by fans of Arsenal and Tottenham – two other teams that had committed to the European Super League before also withdrawing.

More than 1,000 Gunners fans gathered outside the Emirates Stadium before their Premier League game with Everton, calling for owner Stan Kroenke to leave.

Some Tottenham fans also staged demonstrations outside their stadium, and the Tottenham Hotspur Supporters’ Trust urged the club’s board to resign immediately in the wake of their involvement.

Agencies

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