Spanish federation rejects request for league game in Miami

September 21, 2018 - 5:26 am

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — A person with knowledge of the decision says the Spanish soccer federation has rejected the league's request to play a regular-season match in the United States, putting the game in doubt.

The person tells The Associated Press that the federation has sent a letter to league officials stating its refusal to authorize the playing of a competitive match between Barcelona and Girona on Jan. 26 in Miami. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the person is not authorized to speak publicly on the matter.

According to the person, the federation told the league it has failed to show that the overseas match would comply with Spanish and international regulations and TV broadcast contracts, and that it would not represent a harm to the other 18 league clubs and the fans of Girona and Barcelona.

The league asked the federation for authorization to play the match last week.

The refusal by the federation was first reported by Spanish radio station COPE.

If the match goes ahead, it would be the first Spanish league game played in another country — an innovation the league wants to implement to increase its global reach and help it compete with the richer Premier League in England.

The Spanish players' union and some fans have been critical of the plan to play competitive matches abroad.


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