La Liga captains to meet over concern about playing in U.S.

Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

It was reported last Thursday that beginning with the 2019-20 season, La Liga and marketing firm Relevant Sports would stage at least one La Liga game would be played in the United States in an attempt to gain exposure in a valuable television market.

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On Wednesday, the Spanish players’ union, AFE, released a statement deriding the decision after they claim they were never consulted by La Liga executives. In their mind and their words, the players “feel marginalized in decision-making.”

“Footballers once again feel marginalized in decision-making. We believe their opinions are essential for the growth of Spanish football.

“We demand balance and common sense. If the greatness of football is the passion it generates, why are decisions made against it?”

“We do not understand the unilateral decisions. La Liga is distancing the fans of the players, something that harms the show and the essence of football.”

As a follow-up to the statement, captains of La Liga’s 20 teams — including Barcelona’s Sergio Busquets and Real Madrid’s Sergio Ramos — are schedule to meet as a collective on Wednesday to discuss their “concerns” about moving a real, meaningful Spanish league fixture off Spanish soil.

La Liga would still need to gain approval of a number of different governing bodies before staging a league game on U.S. soil, most notably that of FIFA, CONCACAF and the U.S. Soccer federation.