Europe’s top court ruled that UEFA has been “abusing a dominant position” in its control of European football on Thursday, in a significant boost to the Super League project.

The Super League and its backers, A22 Sports, argued that UEFA’s prohibition of the would-be competition — first launched in April 2021 — and its threatened punishments for participating clubs was an illegal monopoly under European competition law.

Thursday’s ruling by the European Court of Justice [ECJ] found that FIFA and UEFA’s rules requiring new football competitions to be subject to their prior approval, and banning players from taking part in those competitions, were “unlawful.”

“There is no framework for the FIFA and UEFA rules ensuring that they are transparent, objective, non-discriminatory and proportionate,” the court said.

“Similarly, the rules giving FIFA and UEFA exclusive control over the commercial exploitation of the rights related to those competitions are such as to restrict competition, given their importance for the media, consumers and television viewers in the European Union.”

The court found that organising football competitions is an economic activity and “therefore must comply with the competition rules and respect the freedom of movement.”