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McIlroy: Breakaway is ‘money grab’ just like European Super League

R

ory McIlroy has re-iterated his opposition to a proposed Saudi-backed breakaway golf series, calling it a “money grab” and comparing it to football’s doomed European Super League

A host of leading golfers, including Dustin Johnson, Justin Rose and Bryson DeChambeau have reportedly been offered lucrative deals to join the Premier Golf League. 

Under the PGL’s proposals outlined in January last year, 48 players would compete in an 18-event season offering a total prize fund of £183million, but McIlroy, Jon Rahm and Brooks Koepka – at the time the top three ranked players in the world – all ruled themselves out.

Speaking ahead of the Wells Fargo Championship, McIlroy said he had first been contacted about the idea in 2014 and that nothing had come to fruition, also noting that the latest story emerged on the day of the PGA Tour’s annual player meeting.

“You go back to what happened last week with the European Super League in football and people can see it for what it is, which is a money grab,” McIlroy said.

“Which is fine if that’s what you are playing golf for, to make as much money as possible, then go and do that if that makes you happy. But I think the top players in the game – I’m playing this game to try to cement my place in history and my legacy and to win major championships.

“Golf has been very good to me over the years and I honestly don’t think there is a better structure in place in golf and I don’t think there will be.

“You have the strategic partnership as well between Europe and the PGA Tour and that’s only going to strengthen the structure of golf going forward as well in terms of scheduling and all sorts of other stuff and working together a little bit more.

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“I’m very much against it (the breakaway) and I don’t see why anyone would be for it.”

PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan addressed the player meeting at Quail Hollow on Tuesday evening and said any player signing up to the new league would face suspension and possible expulsion from the Tour.

That could have consequences for eligibility for major championships and the Ryder Cup, but McIlroy agrees with Monahan’s stance.


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