RECAP: Chelsea vs Brighton and Gary Neville's brilliant reaction to the demise of the European Super League
Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher toasted the demise of the Super League after the controversial breakaway tournament was disowned by English clubs.
On a dramatic Tuesday night Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool, Tottenham and Arsenal confirmed they intend to withdraw while Chelsea are understood to be pulling out.
Neville declared the Super League was finished when he appeared on Sky Sports after Chelsea’s draw against Brighton.
He said: “It’s absolutely incredible. There was large concern yesterday morning as a Manchester United fan thinking Joel Glazer put his name on a statement – you thought it’s going to be difficult to back down.
“But City have enacted withdrawal proceedings and Chelsea are doing the same. It’s gone, done!”
When the news that Ed Woodward had resigned as Manchester United executive vice-chairman broke, Neville tweeted a waving emoji.
The former United defender then posted a picture of himself drinking a glass of wine with the caption: “To the Super League.”
Neville’s fellow Sky Sports pundit Carragher, a former Liverpool defender and a fellow outspoken critic of the Super League, tweeted a picture of a headstone engraved with the inscription “European Super League, born April 18, 2021, died April 20, 2021.”
Carragher claimed the comments of Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp, midfielder James Milner and Leeds striker Patrick Bamford after Monday night’s match helped swing the balance.
“I just think the reaction of everybody, Jurgen Klopp coming out last night, James Milner and Patrick Bamford,” he told Sky Sports.
“Yesterday afternoon I was fearful. It was really serious, it felt like there was no fight, that the ship had sailed.
“But after the game I felt reenergised and was confident this would be over after those players came out. That gave me a huge lift. I said as soon as one goes that’s the end of it, and it’s finished.
“Klopp threw the owners under the bus, the captain (Jordan Henderson) has, Kenny Dalglish has. I don’t know what they are hanging on for. I don’t see a future for the ownership on the back of this.”
Brighton midfielder Adam Lallana saluted the role his former Liverpool team-mate Henderson played in driving the message home.
He told Sky Sports: “It’s surreal really. I had this funny feeling in my tummy all day and when we heard a couple of teams had pulled out it went.
“He’s proven on countless occasions he leads the captains and the football club.
“We’re stronger than anything or anyone, all the clubs coming together as one.
“We didn’t want the Super League to happen, we want games like this to have meaning.”
Chelsea 0-0 Brighton
Brighton produced an excellent performance against Chelsea where the host's decision to quit the European Super League hung heavy over Stamford Bridge.
Brighton had Ben White sent off for a second booking at the death but they had the game’s best chances through Adam Lallana and Danny Welbeck.
Less than 90 minutes before Tuesday night’s kick-off news filtered out that Chelsea were preparing documents to leave the Super League that had only been announced late on Sunday.
That the Blues failed to hit full tilt is hardly surprising given the swirling Super League situation.
The second half continued in the same vein as the first however, with both sides looking tired and cancelling each other out.
Brighton snatched some momentum in the late exchanges with Lallana spurning a fine chance and then Welbeck whipping a shot against the post.
There was still time for White to receive his second yellow card and his marching orders, but not enough for either side to break the deadlock.
Brighton boss Graham Potter said, "We could have won it - we hit the post. We started well, but a couple of errors gave them some chances, but I felt we had the bigger chances in the second half. Our boys were fantastic, and it shows that we are fighting for every point.
"We've got so many games to play and we're not thinking about anything other than we need to fight for every point and every game. Nobody gives you anything in this league. We need to fight for it and respect it."
On the European Super League: "It has been disturbing, sad and frustrating. It feels like the game has been attacked and the integrity of the game in this country and across Europe. It is about having your fate sorted on the pitch."
Brighton are next in action at relegated Sheffield United on Saturday and will be without the suspended Ben White.