La Liga have confirmed Segunda side Malaga are unlikely to be relegated administratively this season despite their precarious financial position, but their status ‘cannot be guaranteed’.
A report in Cadena Cope last month claimed the club’s dire off-field situation may lead to them being automatically demoted in a similar manner as Reus were the previous year.
The club, who are above the drop zone by just two points, are in a financial mess with the club’s Qatari owners Sheikh Abdullah Al Thani blamed for the situation.
It had been claimed that La Liga may force administration upon the Andalusian club and that would see them relegated from the Segunda.
“It is a club in a complicated financial situation because it will have to pay money that from the start of season numbers which it will not be able to generate,” La Liga’s corporate general manager, José Guerra explained, as cited by El Desmarque.
“Malaga continues to do it’s homework, continues to have a plan and still has options to reach the end of the season with its obligations fulfilled, but now it is not guaranteed.
“The consequences of a club that does not end the season may be a relegation, like that of Reus, but first we would have to reach a recidivism in default, which in this case does not currently occur.
“This is not the situation in Malaga because it has no defaults and it does have a plan. We are working with Malaga to evolve it.”
A report in Marca last month outlined how the club’s owners have made several costly financial decisions.
A number of examples of mismanagement are cited – including the opportunity to buyback striker Youssef En-Nesyri from Leganes this summer.
It is claimed a €20m transfer to English side Brighton was in place and all Malaga needed to do was to utilise their €15m buyback on the player and make a €5m profit on the same day – but this option was refused, and the striker is now at Sevilla.
Another case was former player Jony, for whom they rejected offers from Alaves – where he was on loan – and Lazio, who had a pre-contract agreement in place for the following summer.
The Italian club offered to pay €2m to sign him a year in advance and Malaga refused but FIFA ruled that the player should be allowed to move to Rome – and the deal was completed without a transfer fee.
A number of other money-making opportunities have been missed: Augsburg had a €5m bid rejected for defender Diego González, who was not a regular in Malaga’s team, for instance.
As reported by Marca back in September, the financial crisis at the Andalusian club meant they needed a boost in finances in the region of €5-6m to carry on operating in the second tier beyond the new year – a scenario which was eventually averted.
Reus were automatically relegated from the second-tier last season, were banned from professional football for the next three years and been hit by a €250k fine.
Indeed, previous reports claimed that whilst the possibility of Reus being relegated last year stood at 100% due to the finances, the same chance of the Andalusian club going this year stands at 75%.
The report adds that even if Malaga manage to avoid being relegated by the authorities this season, it may be an even worse outcome ahead of next season.
It claims that in such an event, the Costa del Sol club will remain in the second tier but be banned from signing any new players while also seeing further slashes to their current budget.