UEFA have opened disciplinary proceedings against Barcelona, Real Madrid and Juventus over their involvement in the failed European Super League proposal last month. The clubs were named as three of the 12 ‘Founding Members’ of the competition, which is now in disarray with the vast majority of sides pulling out in quick succession as a result of the significant backlash.
Barca, Real and Juventus are the only clubs yet to renounce their involvement in the Super League, making a joint statement earlier this month to defend themselves and the competition.
The other nine teams, including the six Premier League sides – Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur – had already been handed a financial punishment by UEFA in the form of a combined £15million goodwill payment to benefit the grassroots game across Europe.
However, it seems as though the remaining trio will be subject to harsher treatment as a result of their determination to go ahead with the breakaway league.
UEFA released a statement on Tuesday evening announcing their plans to investigate any rule-breaking that may have taken place with regards to the proposal.
“Following an investigation conducted by UEFA ethics and disciplinary inspectors in connection with the so-called ‘Super League’ project, disciplinary proceedings have been opened against Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus for a potential violation of UEFA’s legal framework,” the statement read.
“Further information will be made available in due course.”
The announcement of the Super League was met with widespread opposition from across the football world, with many onlookers accusing the club owners involved of excessive greed and a lack of respect for the sport’s pyramid system and match-going supporters.
Real president Florentino Perez masterminded the plans that would have seen 15 sides ring-fenced into the competition each year, with only five places up for grabs on merit.
The 74-year-old insisted last month that the Super League would go ahead despite the quickfire exits of the other nine clubs, claiming that each team had entered into a legally-binding contract that cannot be broken.
“I’m not going to take my time to explain what a binding contract is here,” Perez told AS. “But the fact is, the clubs can’t leave.
“Some, because of the pressure, have had to say they’ll leave. But this project, or something very similar, will happen, and I hope it’s in the near future.”
Manchester City became the first club to withdraw from the Super League just two days after the plans were unveiled, with Chelsea the next to join the newly-crowned Premier League champions in pulling out.
Arsenal, Manchester United, Tottenham and Liverpool quickly followed suit, as did Atletico Madrid, Inter Milan and AC Milan, to leave only the remaining trio of Barca, Real and Juventus.
The six Premier League clubs were commended for their decision to leave by UEFA president Alexander Ceferin, who highlighted their courage in admitting their mistakes.
“In accepting their commitments and willingness to repair the disruption they caused, UEFA wants to put this chapter behind it and move forward in a positive spirit,” he said.
“These clubs recognised their mistakes quickly and have taken action to demonstrate their contrition and future commitment to European football.
“The same cannot be said for the clubs that remain involved in the so-called Super League and UEFA will deal with those clubs subsequently.”
Boris Johnson initially gave the go-ahead to the Premier League’s ‘big six’ clubs before they announced plans for a European Super League, according to reports.
It was widely reported that No. 10 officials met then-Manchester United chief executive Ed Woodward four days before the announcement was made late on April 18.
No. 10 has denied that the ESL was discussed, instead claiming coronavirus protocols were on the agenda.
English top-flight clubs Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur each announced that they were joining forces with clubs across Europe to create an exclusive and lucrative 12-team league.
La Liga giants Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid and Barcelona, and Serie A’s Juventus, AC Milan and Inter Milan were also involved.
The claim is a stark contrast to how Johnson handled the news publicly.
On April 20, he told a press conference: “The first step is clearly to back the football authorities in this country – the FA, the Football Association, the Premier League – in the steps that they are taking to counteract this initiative.
“But be in no doubt that we don’t support it.
“I think it is not in the interests of fans, it is not in the interest of football.
“How can it be right to a situation in which you create a kind of cartel that stops clubs competing against each other?
“Playing against each other properly with all hope and excitement that gives to fans up and down the country.
“I think it offends against the basic principles of competition.
“If necessary, in order to protect that principle of competition, we will seek a legislative solution.
“But we hope that the [football authorities] can find a way forward themselves.”
Seeing as it’s Rocket League, and you’re bound to have plenty of spectacular crashes each match, some recent high-profile incidents from IRL were showcased in the F1 Fan Pack trailer.
We see a bit of Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen’s wheel-to-wheel coming together at Imola this year, as well as another Red Bull and Mercedes incident – where Alex Albon saw the chance to get his first podium snatched away after an incident with the seven-time world champion.
If you were watching that race from Austria last year, or saw the recent series of Drive To Survive, you’ll know the Thai driver was far from pleased.
In terms of a release time, on Reddit Psyonix said the F1 Fan Pack should be available in Rocket League at 9am pacific time on Thursday May 20. For those in other time zones that’s 12pm eastern and 5pm BST.
The Rocket League F1 Fan Pack will be available for 2,000 credits.
Which decal will you kit your car out in? Will you go for one of the main players in title hunt, Mercedes and Red Bull, who seem destined for an all-season long intense battle the likes of which we’ve not seen for years?
Apple is back with a brand-new iPad Pro and this latest tablet truly is as powerful as a fully-fledged laptop. That’s because the new iPad is powered by the custom-designed M1 processor – the very same silicon brain found inside the MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, Mac mini, and all-new iMac. Unsurprisingly, these MacBook brains ensure the new iPad Pro is supremely quick – not that it was exactly a slouch when powered by last year’s A12Z Bionic chip – but is it really time to ditch all of your other devices and go all-in on iPad? Express.co.uk has been trying out the new iPad Pro ahead of its launch. Here’s what we think of Apple’s most powerful tablet to date.
Apple iPad Pro 12.9-inch review:
When you unwrap this latest and greatest 12.9-inch iPad and lift it out of the box the first thing you’ll notice is that the design hasn’t changed one bit. That’s no bad thing as this tablet still looks stunning with its premium aluminium case and edge-to-edge display continue to make this the best looking iPad on the market.
So, if the look hasn’t been updated, what is new? All of the major changes with this new iPad Pro become apparent as soon as you hit the power button and boot-up this new tablet. Perhaps the biggest upgrade is that Apple-designed M1 chip.
This processor was announced last year and is already tucked inside the latest MacBook Pro and MacBook Air. It’s even powering the newly launched iMac and, as you can read in our review, it’s made that desktop PC more responsive and faster than ever.
The new 12.9-inch screen is stunning (Image: EXPRESS NEWSPAPERS)
With that new M1 processor inside the iPad Pro, you’ll really struggle to find anything this device can’t cope with. We’ve been running everything from Photoshop, to memory-guzzling games, multiple apps side-by-side, and more, with the new Pro taking it all in its stride.
If you want some geeky stats, the new Pro is actually around 50 percent faster than its predecessor, which is a massive gain considering just how quick the 2020 iPad Pro felt (and continues to feel!). If you’re truly a “pro” user, this extra oomph will be a very welcome addition as the iPad will breeze through tasks like a burning hot knife through butter.
But while it feels counterintuitive to moan about having so much grunt at our fingertips, we do wonder whether the average iPad Pro owner will ever really take advantage of that immense engine. Still, while you might not truly feel the benefit of the M1 when watching Netflix, replying to emails, and shopping from the sofa …if nothing else, the powerful M1 should mean this iPad Pro continues to get the latest software update for years to come.
The new iPad looks the same but is packed with extra features (Image: EXPRESS NEWSPAPERS)
It’s powered by the M1 chip now found in the iMac and MacBooks (Image: APPLE)
The 12.9-inch iPad Pro also benefits from an improved screen, that Apple is calling its “Liquid Retina XDR Display” (for reference, the 11-inch sticks with last year’s screen).
Now, when you first switch things on you might not really notice that much of a difference between old and new – as the previous iPad Pro still looks truly great. However, find some HDR 4K content and you’re suddenly struck by how much better this updated screen is over last year’s standard Liquid Retina model.
Colours look far richer on this mini-LED panel and blacks get more punch. It’s also brighter than before, which is a bonus for anyone using their iPad Pro in the great outdoors.
And that screen isn’t the only bonus. If you love taking your iPad on the road as it also now features 5G network technology. That means you can pop a 5G SIM inside and unlock speeds of over 300Mbps. That’s around four times faster than the average home broadband speed in the UK, so should be more than enough to collaborate on documents, join videoconferences, and more from the road.
Of course, buying the cellular model does cost £150 more, but having 5G in an iPad makes a lot of sense and we can see this becoming a hugely popular addition as this next-generation mobile signal improves across the UK.
The Magic Keyboard is available in white (Image: EXPRESS NEWSPAPERS)
Apple iPad Pro review (Image: EXPRESS NEWSPAPERS)
If you do opt for the more expensive model, you’ll get that clever eSIM inside which allows you to instantly connect to networks across the world without having to buy a local SIM card.
The next upgrade that’s definitely worth mentioning is the new Ultra-Wide front-facing camera, which now gets a clever feature called Center Stage.
This option allows the camera to track your movements when making video calls so, as you move around the room, you’re always in the shot.
It even knows when someone else walks in and joins the conversation – the camera will instantly switch to a wider angle to ensure everyone is seen. It’s a really clever system and we wonder how long before more of Apple’s products get a similar technology.
It’s worth noting that the rear dual-lens camera set-up with clever LiDAR sensor has stayed the same as last year’s iPad Pro. Although images are improved slightly, thanks to some clever AI. This becomes more apparent when shooting images at night with the new Pro handling low light shots far better than before.
If it’s battery life that concerns you there is good and bad news. Unlike the new MacBooks, which saw a huge battery boost when Apple fitted the new M1 chipset, things have stayed pretty much the same on the new iPad. While the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro now have industry-leading battery life, the iPad Pro has the same 10-hours on a single charge as last year. It’s still amazing and will easily last a long-haul flight – when we all get flying again – but don’t expect to head away for the weekend without a USB-C charger in your bag.
You still get the same great experience using Apple Pencil (Image: EXPRESS NEWSPAPERS)
Other upgrades worth a mention include much faster data transfer speeds thanks to a Thunderbolt 3 USB-C port and, if money is no option, you can now add a whopping 2TB of in-built storage – although that model will cost you £2,149 when you include 5G too. Ouch!
For those who want a more laptop-style experience, the iPad Pro continues to be compatible with numerous keyboard options, including Apple’s Magic Keyboard. Some reports had suggested last year’s Magic Keyboard wouldn’t work with the new 2021 Pro, but in our test that doesn’t seem to be the case.
If you do fancy buying one of these typing accessories it’s worth noting that the Magic Keyboard now comes in white and looks very smart.
Along with all of those new features you still get fast unlocking via Face ID, full compatibility with the new Apple Pencil, four amazing speakers and studio-quality microphones. So, that’s all the best bits about the latest iPad Pro model, but is there anything not to like?
Our main problem is that, while it’s an incredible feat that Apple is using the same powerful chip in the iPad as it uses to fuel the MacBook Pro and iMac, some may find there’s little point to all that power in a tablet.
Apple is pretty clear this new iPad Pro 12.9-inch isn’t designed to replace a laptop and we’d agree with that, even with the M1 inside, there’s still plenty this tablet cannot do that a MacBook Air lets you do. Running more than two apps side-by-side would be a cinch for the powerful M1 …but iPadOS doesn’t let you do that, for example.
iPadOS software has come a long way in recent years, but there’s no hiding from the fact that this new device is still just a tablet. And if you want to get some real work done… you’re going to want an M1-powered computer on your desk as well.
That said, if you’re looking to buy a new tablet and really want the best of the best, you’re not going to find anything as good as the new iPad Pro. For everyone who wants a tablet to do basic “tablet stuff”, don’t forget that Apple recently brought some of our favourite parts of the iPad Pro design – such as the edge-to-edge screen – to the new iPad Air last year, and starting from £579, that’s a pretty phenomenal deal.
Apple iPad Pro 12.9-inch review (Image: APPLE)
iPad Pro 12.9 review: Final Verdict
PROS • Ludicrously powerful • Stunning screen • Improved front-facing camera • Now comes with 2TB of storage CONS • Can get very expensive • Rear camera stays the same • Is it simply too powerful for a tablet?
This is quite simply the most incredible tablet anyone has ever made. With the M1 tucked inside, the iPad Pro is now as powerful as Apple’s latest desktop PC, boasts an improved screen, and access to blisteringly-fast 5G downloads when away from your home Wi-Fi connection.
The new front-facing camera system with Center Stage is amazing when making FaceTime calls, and, for those who can afford it, there’s now the option to add a whopping 2TB of built-in storage.
Basically, everything we moaned was missing from last year’s iPad Pro has now been added. And as such, it’s hard to fault this premium tablet.
The only thing to remember is that Apple sells more affordable iPads, including the truly excellent iPad Air, and we’d make sure you need all that extra power and LiDAR camera before splashing more than £1,000 on a tablet (or £2,597 if you want the top-of-the-line iPad Pro with a keyboard and Apple Pencil stylus thrown-in).
If you have that kind of space on your credit card and want to feel the full force of that M1 chip, what are you waiting for?
What was this? Tottenham one goal to the good and still banging shots against the woodwork and eventually adding a second.
By BASKing in the glory of the Fantasy Formation of Bale, Alli, Son and Kane, Ryan Mason has given Spurs fans a taste of what they are dreaming of. And with speculation surrounding Kane, it might be last fleeting glimpse of a line-up for the ages.
If it was still the 2013 Gareth Bale and Dele Alli from 2017, Spurs’ season would have been very different indeed.
But at least these last more cossetted games of the season, away from Jose Mourinho’s abrasive abuse, have given both players a chance to rebuild some confidence.
Sadly for Bale it is unlikely to be enough to earn him a final-year Real Madrid swansong, so his summer looks uncertain.
But Alli is still just 25.
As he showed four seasons ago, he has the potential to be among the very best. And with his pace over five yards, his energy and, yes, that ‘devilment’ Mauricio Pochettino kept going on about, he offers something different.
Gareth Southgate has three places extra in his Euro 2020 squad that he was not expecting. Is it time to hold out the olive branch to Alli and see what he can do?
Porto is set to stage the Champions League final between Chelsea and Manchester City, according to reports. UEFA have been forced into a rethink amid Turkey’s ongoing struggle with the coronavirus pandemic, meaning the showpiece is set to move to Portugal from Istanbul for a second successive season.
Turkey was placed on England’s red list at the end of last week meaning fans will be unable to make the journey to support their teams.
Talks were immediately held between UEFA and the UK government about the prospect of bringing the final to England.
Wembley Stadium, where the two sides met in the FA Cup semi-final last month, was reportedly the frontrunner to host the biggest game in club football.
Villa Park and the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium was also said to be under consideration.
However, according toThe Telegraph, Porto’s Estadio do Dragao is now set to host the final at the end of the month.
Manchester City were crowned Premier League champions on Tuesday after nearest rivals Manchester United fell to a 2-1 defeat to Leicester City. It was their third league title in the past four seasons with Pep Guardiola’s men being deserved champions.
It has been an utterly dominant season from City as they reclaim their crown from Liverpool.
Express Sport takes a look back on the five matches that has seen them be named as champions.
Manchester City 2-5 Leicester City
It seems somewhat bizarre to at first pick out a defeat and a heavy one at that but this thumping at the hands of Brendan Rodgers’ men gave City the lessons that they needed.
Defensively, the Citizens looked vulnerable throughout as Jamie Vardy bagged a hat-trick, with James Maddison and Youri Tielemans also getting on the scoresheet.
That reverse convinced the club to turn to the transfer market and bring in Ruben Dias from Benfica – a move that has been inspired.
Manchester City have been crowned Premier League champions after their noisy neighbours Manchester United fell to a 2-1 home defeat against Leicester. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer named a heavily-rotated and vastly inexperienced side against the Foxes to prevent the risk of injury with the Europa League final against Villarreal in Gdansk on the horizon.
United, who played just two days ago in the 3-1 win at Aston Villa, were forced to cram in tonight’s fixture after anti-Glazer protests saw their Premier League game with Liverpool postponed earlier this month.
The Red Devils will now host Liverpool on Thursday at Old Trafford, a match which Solskjaer evidently deems more important.
His bold team selection was welcomed by Leicester, who needed nothing other than all three points to keep their own top-four hopes alive.
A stunning side-footed volley from Luke Thomas inside the opening exchanges put the Foxes in dreamland before Mason Greenwood immediately levelled things up.