La Liga president Javier Tebas ‘will not relent’ on United States move

La Liga president Javier Tebas insists he will ‘not relent’ on his plan to stage league matches in the United States despite heavy opposition.

Real Madrid president Florentino Perez, FIFA chief Gianni Infantino and the Spanish FA are among those who have stated their ‘total opposition’ to such plans.

“Playing in the United States is vital to our strategy there and we won't relent on what is our right,” Tebas told an interview with Reuters.

“If you want to make your industry more global, as La Liga wants to, if you want to be among the biggest industries in world sport then you have to be immersed in the U.S. market.

“For us the United States is the second biggest market for television rights, it's a very consolidated sports industry, with huge growth on social media and digital platforms.

“It's not easy to take a game out of its usual competition and we knew we would meet a cultural wall of European and Spanish institutions, but we began this process two years ago and we're going to keep working to make it happen.

“There are many things that danger the integrity of a competition. In a World Cup a team playing a World cup semifinal on Tuesday has a greater advantage in the final than the team playing on Wednesday.

“Teams have also played at other stadiums while their grounds are being renovated or in order to generate more revenue.

“If we really believe in this sporting puritanism then we would need to make many changes in football.

“It's voluntary, so if Real Madrid don't want to go they won't. But you have to remember that Real Madrid have played in many tournaments in the U.S. organised by Relevent so it's not a coherent argument, but we're not concerned,

“In the short term we haven't got plans to play in Asia, right now the U.S. is where we need to work in order to grow our brand,"

“Football is the most played sport in schools in the U.S. and so many people want to watch the biggest matches. It's a very big market and there's room for everyone, for the MLS, the Mexican league and for us.

“This will promote the game and make more people want to watch the MLS. We're going to play a game in the United States to promote our league and football in general, and I think that's very positive.

“I don't see it as a threat to other leagues, we see it as an opportunity to promote and grow the industry, which is important for everyone.”

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