A HOWL of outrage has greeted the proposals by the big six British football clubs to breakaway and formed a European super-league.

It is the fact that the super-league will have no relegation that is so controversial and that the founding members are guaranteed a place forever.

This is the moment that football really stops being a sport and instead becomes a made-for-TV entertainment.

At the heart of true sport is meritocracy. If you are talented enough, you will succeed.

In its current form, football, for all the mega-millions of the big clubs who try to buy success, still has that – as Leicester City and West Ham have shown this season. They have risen into the top four because of their great results and they deserve to be there.

This season, Arsenal and Spurs, who arrogantly consider themselves to be “big six” clubs, do not deserve to be there because their teams are disappointing – so disappointing in Spurs’ case that they sacked their manager only yesterday.

The self-appointed “big six” would deny these smaller, but better footballing, clubs the chance to go on and try their skills at a higher level.

This breaks the basic tenets of sport. It is not fair – and all the clubs, and their supporters, in the English pyramid system feel this unfairness.

It is arrogant foul play but, despite the howls of outrage, who will stand up to the breakaway clubs? Will they be thrown out of their domestic leagues? Will their players not be selected for international sides? Will their fans desert their beloved clubs on a question of principle? The answer to all these questions is “unlikely”, so the football authorities are going to have to reach a compromise with the breakaway clubs which will mean giving them more power over the European game.

It looks like they have won already.