Spain's Football Season Disrupted by Players' Strike

Sports | August 19, 2011, Friday // 18:55
Bulgaria: Spain's Football Season Disrupted by Players' Strike President of the Spanish Footballers Association (AFE), Luis Rubiales, arrives for the meeting with the Profesional Football League (FLP) in Madrid, Spain, 19 August 2011. EPA/BGNES

The first round of Spain's football Primera Division (First League) and Segunda Division (Second League) will be put off as a result of a strike by players in both divisions.

Thus, the Bercelona-Malaga and Real Madrid-Athletic Bilboa matches scheduled for the opening round this weekend will not take place.

Talks between Spain's Professional Football League (LFP)) and the Association of Spanish Footballers (AFE) broke down Friday, both sides announced, as cited by international media

"We put on the table today our positions, which are very far apart, and we are concentrating now on being able to save the second day," LFP chairman Jose Luis Astiazaran is quoted as saying.

Negotiations to settle the dispute will resume Saturday and Monday in an attempt to rescue the second round of matches but if the strike continues longer that might endanger the entire Spanish league season.

The Association of Spanish Football Players has been seeking improved salary guarantees in a new collective bargaining agreement as clubs owe some USD 72 M in unpaid salaries to more than 200 players.

Spanish players representing all 42 teams in the top two divisions supported the strike that lead to the first disruption of the Spanish football championship in 27 years.

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Tags: Spain, Spanish football championship, Primera Division, Segunda Division, Spain's Professional Football League, Association of Spanish Footballers, collective bargaining, Barcelona, Real Madrid
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