Court set to rule on La Liga strike

MADRID - A Madrid court has postponed a decision on whether to prevent a La Liga strike on April 2/3 until it has heard arguments put forward by the professional footballleague (LFP) and six clubs against industrial action.

The clubs - which include Sevilla and Villarreal and are known as the G-6 - must make their case at a hearing next Tuesday along with the LFP, the court said in a statement on Friday.

The LFP decided at a meeting last month to suspend matchday 30 unless the government scraps a rule that one La Liga game per matchday should be shown on free television.

However, the G-6 broke ranks and filed a legal challenge on Wednesday to try to have the decision declared void.

They believe a strike would be "disproportionate, inopportune, against the interest of clubs, the competition and supporters and, what's more, against the law."

The LFP argues that removing the obligation to show one match for free will strengthen clubs' bargaining power in negotiations on audiovisual rights with media firms.

It also wants guarantees about how much cash clubs are entitled to receive from betting and lottery revenue.

LFP president Jose Luis Astiazaran said on Thursday he saw "very little chance" of finding a solution that would prevent the suspension of matchday 30, when La Liga leaders Barcelona are due to play at Villarreal and second-placed Real Madrid host Sporting Gijon.

However, he said the LFP was still open to dialogue and Friday's match between Spain and Czech Republic in Granada, which LFP and government officials are due to attend, could be a chance to seek common ground.


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