James Corden feels "heartbroken" by plans to launch a European Super League.
The 42-year-old TV star has hit out at the 12 football teams in Europe — including Manchester United, Barcelona, Juventus and Real Madrid — that have announced plans to launch their own breakaway competition, a move that could potentially derail the traditional structures of European football, which is made up of domestic leagues like the English Premier League, Spain's La Liga and Italy's Serie A, from which teams qualify to play in continental competitions such as the Champions League.
In a six-minute tirade, James said on The Late Late Show: "I'm heartbroken by it, genuinely heartbroken by it. I'm heartbroken because the owners of these teams have displayed the worst kind of greed I have ever seen in sport."
James — who is a supporter of West Ham United, who are not connected to the breakaway plans — observed that many British teams were founded by working-class fans more than 100 years ago.
He also accused the billionaire owners of moving their clubs away from the communities where they're based.
He said: "It's always niggled at the back of fans' minds whether these owners truly understood what it meant to be part of their club, to be part of their history ... and if they could be true and honourable custodians of their futures."
James admitted that the breakaway plans have hit him and other fans around the world "hard".
He said: "It's not just that they don't understand football or what it means to be a fan of a football club ... it was simply the realisation that they don't care. Right? They don't care — they don't care about anybody but themselves. If anything, if anything, they look at the historical fan bases of every single club with disdain."
James hit out at the club owners for rubbishing the "hopes and dreams" of fans across Europe.
He said: "It's hard to express how much communities rely on football, not just financially, which is considerable, but football is a focal point of a town's hopes and dreams.
"These dreams, they've just been shattered not just in Britain, across Europe. And the reason the dreams have been shattered and discarded is so that a group of billionaires can buy themselves a bigger boat or a second boat.
"Football is a working-class game where anyone can beat anyone on their day and it's that that makes it incredible, it's that that's made it a global force."
And if the Super League does happen, James said, “I don’t want to be overdramatic but I do think it is the end of the sport we love, it truly is.”
Watch James's rant here:
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