Leeds United defender Luke Ayling believes any European Super League would take away the 'beauty of football'

Luke Ayling believes the European Super League would take away the beauty of football.

Tuesday, 20th April 2021, 1:44 pm
Updated Tuesday, 20th April 2021, 1:48 pm
Leeds United wear 'earn it' t-shirts ahead of Liverpool clash. Pic: Getty

Leeds United earned a hard-fought 1-1 draw with Liverpool on Monday night at Elland Road in Premier League action.

The Whites' hosting of the Reds played out amid the backdrop of anger from supporters and pundits at a proposed European Super League.

Six top flight clubs - Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea and Manchester City - have signed up for the tournament that poses a challenge to the UEFA Champions League.

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The breakaway competition will see the establishment of a ‘closed league’ across Europe, without the threat of relegation for the 12 founding members.

The dozen teams – which includes Spanish sides Real Madrid, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid, as well as Inter Milan, Juventus and AC Milan from Italy – have come in for scathing criticism from across world football.

Protests were held ahead of kick-off in LS11 with both sets of supporters coming together to show their disdain for the idea in a show of solidarity.

Leeds themselves placed a banner inside the stadium and wore t-shirts during their pre-match warm-up with the same message. It read: "Earn it. Football is for the fans."

The Leeds United Supporters' Trust also organised a plane to fly over the ground ahead of the match which said: "Say no to the Super League."

United striker Patrick Bamford hit out at the idea post-match as did visiting captain James Milner with the former Thorp Arch academy product admitting he hopes the idea never comes to fruition.

Ayling, who took the armband for the night in the absence of the suspended Liam Cooper, echoed the sentiments of those annoyed by the Super League concept.

"I think us players feel like most of the people in the country," Ayling said.

"As a club we have worked so hard to get back here [the Premier League] and I think that's the beauty of football. Our whole game is based on that. I don't see why we're trying to change it and hundreds of years of playing it.

"I don't see the point in it but some rich fellas have got together to do something so it is what it is."