Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde welcomed the Champions League's ability to thrill after Tuesday's electrifying 1-1 draw with Inter Milan. He said that no European Super League was needed.
With a total of eight European Cup victories, the San Siro game this week has been the main draw for European elite competition, and the encounter has certainly lived up to expectations.
Inter captain Mauro Icardi equalized for the Italians with an equalizer in the 87th minute, after Malcom had brought a stunning Barca late in an end-to-end game late.
Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde welcomed the Champions League's ability to thrill on Tuesday
Barca still qualified for the 15th time in a row for the 15th consecutive time, while Inter only had to face Tottenham Hotspur to join the Catalans in the last sixteen.
"I have the impression that the Champions League is already a Super League," said Valverde at a press conference.
"We saw a real spectacle on the pitch and on the grandstands tonight, these are high profile events – tonight is our game at Wembley (an exciting 4-2 win over Tottenham Hotspur in October) …"
The German magazine Der Spiegel and a network of international media reported last week that plans for a Super League involving clubs like Barcelona, Real Madrid and Manchester United were back at the table.
Citing leaked documents, the reports claim that a new plan has recently been drafted to propose eleven top European clubs to form a Super League in 2021.
According to the Spiegel, the 16-headed Super League would replace the Champions League and contain 11 "founders" – including Barca and Real – who could not relegate in the first 20 years, and five "guests", including Inter.
Malcom had given a stunning Barcelona a late lead in an end-to-end game at San Siro
Inter coach Luciano Spalletti went on the defensive when he was suggested that his team was back in the Champions League for the first time since the 2011/12 season. This was not a fundamental part of the planned Super League.
"Inter is a team with a lot of history, a lot of power and passionate followers who, as we saw tonight, are having a real impact," he said.
"We deserve to be there."
The captain of Inter Milan, Mauro Icardi, equalized the Italians with an equalizer in the 87th minute