La Liga matches are finally back after more than two months. Coronavirus pandemic (Covid-19) was yet to hit its peak. The Spanish league officials were however eager to have their La Liga football season. But the French Prime Minister Édouard Philippe announced the cancellation of the League 1 and League 2 matches. Consequently, French was the first of Europe’s “Big Five” to call off the soccer matches. Reports also said that President Emmanuel and the sports minister Maracineanu were urging their counterparts in Germany, Italy, and Spain to do the same.
Tebas said in a conference that among the top five leagues, “La Liga” will start first of them all because, “We have worked day and night, shoulder to shoulder with the government, to make this happen.” He added, “I think it is because our health care system is very efficient, has been very efficient, and has diminished the risk of the virus of our players to the maximum, both during training sessions and during the matches. Many other countries copied our protocol. We spent much time on it, and I think it is a wonderful protocol. It has made it possible to come back to play so soon.”
For players and coaches, this is just the beginning of the proceedings. For Tebas, Sánchez, and their co-workers, it’s been underway for a lot of months now. The revival of soccer in Spain, which suffered more than 3x coronavirus mortalities than Germany, wasn’t an easy task. This wasn’t really just a piece of cake. The Spanish sports minister Irene Lozano, Tebas, and Spanish soccer federation president Luis Rubiales established primary ground rules during an eight-hour meeting.
La Liga had to suffer a massive loss of around €1 billion if the season were to cancel. But this deficit could be reduced to about €300 million if it could finish the 2019-2020 campaign behind closed doors. With its financial future on firmer footing, La Liga boosted its funding commitment to lower-tier soccer and amateur sports in Spain by €200 million over the next couple of years. It will also be supporting Spanish tourism during the next two matchdays. In return, and with a promise to adhere to the strict training and playing protocols, La Liga obtained the kind of assistance that ended in Sánchez’s affirmative reply to France 10 days later.
Mayo said, “We did not consider at any moment the potential to cancel the league”. He said, “We never wanted to talk about that. We did not want clubs to think about what would happen if we dropped the idea of continuing the league. We wanted to give hope to all the clubs and stakeholders that La Liga is going to be back. It was our central point because if we started speculating about what would happen, it would be critical to deciding upon the matter.”
He further said, “We are not asking ourselves what would happen if we don’t start again. We want the path to finish the league.”
To find out the updated fixtures and schedule of the La Liga matches, click here.