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Gary Neville is leading a new campaign to introduce an independent football regulator in England, so that a European Super League can never be plotted in secret again.
The ex-Manchester United player announced the joint movement via a video on Twitter and an open letter signed by the likes of Gary Lineker, Rio Ferdinand and Jamie Carragher. A petition calls for a "fairer football for all".
The petition had tens of thousands of signatures within an hour of tweets by Neville, Lineker and a host of other pundits and people within the football media.
Please see an Open Joint Letter https://t.co/O3eHaOJecN
Please sign & share the petition to help create a fairer football for all https://t.co/fHrqDGhVKx
Here's my video for you to share if you like:heart:@Carra23 @rioferdy5 @GaryLineker @laura_woodsy @JanAageFjortoft @henrywinter pic.twitter.com/Betpq9JvOm
- Gary Neville (@GNev2) May 17, 2021
After 100,000 signatures, a petition must be considered for debate in parliament by the UK Government.
The petition states: "The Government should use the recently established fan-led review of football to introduce an Independent Football Regulator in England to put fans back at the heart of our national game."
As well as ex-professionals such as Micah Richards, Darren Fletcher and Jamie Redknapp, the campaign is being backed by journalists and media personalities.
Henry Winter of the Times, talkSPORT's Laura Woods and Robbie Lyle of AFTV are just some of those who have signed the open letter aimed at fans and football's powerbrokers.
It's time to protect English football & the pyramid... we want to ensure there's an independent regulator:grey_exclamation:- Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) May 17, 2021
Retweet & Sign this petition to provide a #voiceforfans :point_down:https://t.co/N5xr6LgyOz pic.twitter.com/FMuAI6yGDc
Enough is enough. Sign and share this petition to stop the ESL from coming back. With an independent regulator, we have an opportunity to save our game. Sign. Share: https://t.co/Vr5v5Jg2NK- Jamie Carragher (@Carra23) May 17, 2021
Felt for a long time that our wonderful game needs an independent regulator. And after what happened in recent weeks it needs looking after more than ever before. Hope you will support this, sign the petition and share: Cheers. https://t.co/81A685W6y5- Gary Lineker :blue_heart: (@GaryLineker) May 17, 2021
The open letter reads: "As football fans, we were appalled by the attempt to set up a European Super League.
"It was a direct threat to the integrity of the game; destroying the concept of sporting merit and open competition.
"Supporters came together with one voice to oppose the cynical power-grab by a group of wealthy owners. The furious protests were heard and the breakaway fell apart.
"Now we must make sure this never happens again. Without swift and direct intervention, the return of a European Super League will be a constant threat.
Gary Neville and Gary Lineker launching a petition calling for an independent regulator after #ESL plot. Signatories include Rio Ferdinand, Jamie Carragher, Micah Richards, FSA and fans' groups from #mufc #cfc #lfc #afc #thfc #whufc and #nufc https://t.co/a5A8ZNj1mc pic.twitter.com/VOqWMS7XbJ- Henry Winter (@henrywinter) May 17, 2021
"We welcome the fan-led Government review of the game and hope it leads to lasting change on an array of important concerns; including co-ordinated strategies to deal with racism, supporters' representation within clubs, LGBTQ issues, ticket costs and the distribution of income. All of those aims can be realised if we take decisive action now.
"It is time to act. We support:
"This regulatory body would have a duty to represent the interests of supporters, protect against bad practices, adjudicate as the overarching body on matters involving the FA, Premier League and EFL and, generally, seek to prioritise the wider good of the game, rather than allow clubs to act solely in their own self-interests.
"We, the undersigned, have a voice in the media. We want your voices to join with ours...
Sign this petition to make your voice heard peacefully."
Featured image credit: PA Images
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