Javier Tebas

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La Liga to continue plan to play games in USA

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MADRID — La Liga president Javier Tebas revealed he is pushing ahead with plans for Spain’s top-flight to play one league game per year in the USA.

After opposition from several leading figures in Spanish and world soccer, including from FIFA president Gianni Infantino and CONCACAF, plans for Barcelona to play Girona in Miami, Florida in Jan. 2019 were scrapped.

La Liga is now locked in a legal battle with the Spanish Football Association as several clubs expressed their concerns about hosting games overseas, while the Spanish league has asked soccer fans in the USA to sign a petition in favor of a league game being played in the U.S. in the near future.

On Thursday in Spain, Tebas was asked by Pro Soccer Talk about why La Liga plans to push ahead with games staged in the USA. He was adamant they will continue to pursue their dream of staging a regular-season game Stateside.

“We want one match, one per season. It is the only place in the world we want to do this,” Tebas said. “Why? Because it is part of our international strategy. The same as the big American competitions play a match outside their country. That is bring to bring the game closer to their fans abroad. One match out of the 380 matches that are played. We thought it was interesting because it is a global phenomenon. Everybody has found out about it. It would really help us to increase our brand value in the United States.”

Tebas insisted that La Liga is not trying to compete with MLS for fans, which is one of the concerns about them staging more than one match per season on U.S. soil.

“Our plan for the United States is to continue to grow, we have a strategic agreement with Relevent Sports, which is one of the main companies for sports management for other sports aside from football. We have a 15-year agreement, so we really want to grow and we really want to help American football grow. We don’t compete against MLS,” Tebas continued.

“With all the football fans they have, and a lot of football is played at school, we will be seen on the television more. But that is the same for everyone, not just for the Premier League or whatever. We want football in general to grow. Because if football grows in general in the United States, why can’t I grow there too? I really think that is the path we should go on, and that is the path we are working on.”

The battle with the Spanish FA and other stakeholders to play games in the U.S. will go on, as Tebas remains adamant that it is crucial for La Liga’s global growth.

Report: La Liga’s Tebas a contender to lead Premier League

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The leader of Spain’s La Liga has become a surprise leading candidate to take charge of the Premier League.

According to a report from The Times in the UK, Javier Tebas has emerged as a frontrunner to replace long-time chief executive Richard Scudamore who stepped down in December.

Tebas has been in charge of Spain’s top-flight since 2013 and has helped the league grown into a mammoth in terms of TV rights worldwide, with only the Premier League ahead of La Liga in terms of revenue generated from selling rights to show their games.

With Scudamore stepping down as the PL’s chief executive in December 2018 the league have been searching for a successor for quite some time as his exit was planned.

Susanna Dinnage initially accepted the role then backed out, while reports state that Tim Davie from the BBC also turned down the chance to succeed Scudamore.

Tebas has a reputation as someone who is keen to try new things and he is the person driving overseas games in the Spanish top-flight. La Liga agreed a deal to play regular-season games in the United States of America (the first of which was supposed to be in Miami in January between Barcelona and Girona) but they are yet to take place as talks between FIFA, the Spanish Football Association and the players’ association continue.

Per the report, the main stumbling block with Tebas getting the gig at the Premier League is that his English is limited. That said, if he is given a period of time to step into the role there’s no doubt he could sort out that issue rather easily in 6-12 months.

There are some concerns being mentioned about Tebas’ alleged support of a right-wing political party in Spain, Vox, while his radical ideas to take league games overseas could lead to plenty of uproar in England and Wales as many fans do not want it to happen.

Barcelona manager pushes for VAR after missed Messi goal

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It’s funny how nobody pushes for these things until the bad things happen to them.

Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde is suddenly a proponent of VAR and goal-line technology after a missed call cost Lionel Messi a goal and possibly cost Barcelona two points.

“I think we all agree that in these plays so evident, the topic of VAR is not about re-refereeing the games, but it was clear that it had crossed and that we are still with this issues puts us on the spot,” he said after the match. “The other day against Malaga there was a ball that went out, we scored and it benefited us.”

What’s more, this incident took place just weeks after the La Liga president announced that the league would institute VAR next season after being vehemently against it for some time, claiming it was too expensive.

“Next season there will be VAR in La Liga, without a doubt,” said league president Javier Tebas on November 14th. “We are making lots of progress in meetings about it right now and it will be ready very soon.”

Barcelona could have taken a commanding six-point lead at the top of the table that would have given them much more room for error, but instead they sit just four points above Valencia, unable to gain any cushion.

La Liga president launches into tirade on PSG and Neymar

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Having exhausted legal options, La Liga’s president Javier Tebas is going public with his frustrations over Neymar’s transfer to Paris Saint-Germain.

Speaking at the SoccerEx conference in Manchester on Wednesday, Tebas made disparaging comments about PSG and Neymar in relation to the club potentially breaching Financial Fair Play rules.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

“PSG are laughing at the system,’ Tebas said through a translator. “A Spanish journalist defined it, and I hope I am not being rude, as like they were peeing in the bed or the swimming pool. Well Neymar has gone on to the diving board and peed into the pool — it can’t be tolerated.”

It’s a shame that Tebas has to stoop to that level to express his feelings over the transfer, which shifts attention and sponsorship dollars from Spain to France. At the end of the day, PSG paid the agreed release clause for Neymar, and Barcelona had to let him leave.

If Tebas wants to be mad at anyone, he should direct his anger at Barcelona for not making the release clause higher, or he should lobby to rescind the rule that forces all players to have a release clause.

Spanish clubs invest only $19 million in winter transfer window

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MADRID (AP) — Spanish league clubs spent only 18 million euros ($19.2 million) in signings in the winter transfer window, the lowest figure among the top leagues.

The Spanish league said Wednesday that the numbers were low in part because teams prioritized retaining talent and improved financial control.

Spanish league president Javier Tebas said local “clubs are spending less because they are operating more maturely.”

He noted that the results are proving very positive,” as Spanish clubs have been succeeding in European competitions recently.

Tebas said “the economic landscape has also changed for investors” and the league “can guarantee them peace of mind when they invest, as there are financial controls and guarantees in place.”

By contrast, Premier League clubs spent a record 237 million pounds ($300 million) in the January transfer window.