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La Liga: Spanish players don’t rule out strike over plans for US games

The Spanish Footballers Union said it was holding a meeting on Wednesday to discuss the issue and added to the criticism which it made at the time of the announcement.

By: Reuters | Madrid |
Updated: August 23, 2018 9:08:37 am
La Liga has not yet given details on when the first game across the Atlantic would take place.

The union of Spanish footballers (AFE) is unanimously opposed to La Liga’s plans to play regular season games in the United States and will not rule out going on strike to protest against the proposals, it said on Wednesday. Captains and vice-captains representing the 20 clubs in the league including Barcelona’s Sergio Busquets and Real Madrid’s Sergio Ramos attended a meeting in Madrid called by AFE President David Aganzo in response to last week’s announcement from La Liga.

“The captains are surprised and angry that such an important decision was taken without being consulted. The players are unanimously against this, no-one is in favour of it,” Aganzo told a news conference. “There are some clubs that are in favour and others that are against it, but I’m speaking on behalf of the footballers.”

Aganzo, who became head of the union this year when Luis Rubiales left the role to become president of the Spanish Football Federation, did not rule out organising a players’ strike if their concerns are not heard. “I will state very clearly that we will do everything possible to avoid this,” he added.

A spokesperson for La Liga said the body had no immediate comment following Aganzo’s declarations. La Liga’s organising body announced last week in partnership with multinational media, sports and entertainment group Relevent that it plans to hold Spanish top-flight games in the U.S. in the future.

La Liga has not given details on when the first match across the Atlantic will take place, how many games per season would be involved, how they would be selected or whether it would compensate the loss of home advantage for teams involved. “Things need to done in a much more coherent way, football is not only business and decisions like this cannot be taken unilaterally and we are fed up now and we have many things to say,” Aganzo added.

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