The International Football Federation doesn’t allow the Spanish La Liga to organize a soccer match between the two Spanish teams – Girona and Barcelona – on the US territory. This claim was stated by the president of the organization – Gianni Infantino – at a meeting with the council. Thus, the organization did not support the idea of La Liga to organize a match between the two Spanish teams on the territory of America. The match was initially to be held in January 2019.
Reasons for the match location ban:
- non-compliance with the FIFA Code;
- elements of separatism;
- pure trade and commerce.
This decision was made on Friday at a meeting of the FIFA Council in Kigali (Rwanda). Prior to this, the organization received requests to get the position on this issue approved by CONCACAF and RFEF. However, the Spanish La Liga hasn’t managed to receive all necessary confirmations on the match.
“I oppose this and refuse to give permission to host the game between the two Spanish teams in Miami. The FIFA Council has considered this issue. We emphasize that the official matches of each national league must be held within the respective country,” said Infantino, which makes the match open to question.
According to football functionaries, the match should be held at the Girona stadium. “The game of the Spanish Championship cannot be held in another area not related to the host country, in particular, in Miami. The FIFA Council considered this issue, and we emphasize that the official matches of the national leagues should be organized in the respective area. Therefore, being the president of FIFA, I declare that the organization opposes the idea of La Liga.”
Taking into account all the above statements and the decision made by The FIFA, La Liga remained unhappy with this claim and is going to protest it in the Sports Arbitration Court in Lausanne. Thus, FIFA supported the position of the Football Federation of Spain, which believes that the transfer of the game to the United States does not comply with the laws and conditions of television contracts and may also disappoint fans and the remaining 18 championship clubs.
It is worth emphasizing that according to the article 71 of the FIFA Code, the organization is left with the final word in “conducting any international matches or competitions.”
It is important to know that La Liga has signed a contract to hold some of the matches in America in order to popularize competitions around the world. It is a 15-year legal agreement with the US entertainment organization to host European soccer matches on the territory of the US and Canada.
However, this initiative was opposed by the Football Federation of Spain, football player association, together with the Government of Spain, seeing an element of separatism in this action.