The proposed European Super League (ESL) appeared dead in the water on Wednesday after all seven English clubs withdrew following a furious backlash from fans and threats from football authorities.

Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal and Inter Milan were seven of the 12 sides to sign up to the breakaway competition that guaranteed spots each year and billions of dollars for founding members.

But the reaction to the plans has been scathing, with politicians and football chiefs threatening to take legal action against the so-called “dirty dozen”, who were told they faced potential bans from domestic and continental competitions.

City were the first to withdraw, followed by United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Tottenham and finally Chelsea — just 48 hours after the Super League was first announced.

That leaves just five Spanish and Italian sides — Real Madrid, Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, AC Milan, and Juventus — still involved.

Manchester United announced the departure of executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward, and Arsenal apologised to fans for their “mistake”.

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