The Spanish football league (LFP)
has called an emergency meeting of first and second division
clubs to try to resolve a dispute over television rights and
other issues that threatens to delay the start of the season.
Thirteen first division clubs have said they will postpone
the season opening on the weekend of August 18/19 unless
broadcasters Canal+ and Mediapro put aside their differences.
Athletic Bilbao, Atletico Madrid, Real Betis, Celta Vigo,
Espanyol, Getafe, Granada, Real Mallorca, Osasuna, Rayo
Vallecano, Real Sociedad, Sevilla and Real Zaragoza have also
made several other demands, including a "transparent and
regulated" system for fixing kick-off times.
They are unhappy with the LFP management, accusing it of
helping some clubs with favourable kick-off times that
The LFP said in a statement on its website on
Friday that there would be an extraordinary general assembly of
the 42 clubs in the top two divisions on Tuesday August 14 at
10:30am. local time to try to find a solution.
In a joint statement on last Tuesday, the 13 clubs
complained of "a situation of serious legal insecurity" after
the highly complex dispute between Canal+ and Mediapro escalated
The clubs called on broadcasters to settle any outstanding
debts with the clubs and to drop any legal demands against them.
Spain's state secretary for sport, Miguel Cardenal, told As
daily on Friday he was optimistic a solution could be found that
would allow La Liga to begin on schedule.
"I am perfectly well informed about what is going on between
the clubs, the LFP and the broadcasters and I would not be so
pessimistic," Cardenal said.
"I know it will be very difficult to reach an agreement...
but in my estimation it will be possible to come to an
understanding with the broadcasters."
Many of the 13 clubs are also unhappy with the way Real
Madrid and Barcelona dominate revenue from audiovisual rights
due to the lack of a system of collective bargaining and income
sharing like those used in rival European leagues.
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