LaLiga plan to postpone Sevilla-Barcelona fixture after CAS ruling on FIFA extension

By Sports Desk August 29, 2021

LaLiga has requested the postponement of two games, including Barcelona's trip to Sevilla, after failing to get interim measures in place relating to the release of players for international duty.

The governing body issued an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) against the decision taken by FIFA to put in place a two-day extension to the CONMEBOL calendar for fixtures in September and October, a move made amid the complications caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Due to strict rules that would require players to quarantine for 10 days upon their return, the Premier League refused to release nearly 60 players travelling to 26 countries on the United Kingdom's red list due to COVID-19.

LaLiga announced support to those clubs in Spain that opted not to let individuals travel to play for South American nations in upcoming World Cup qualifiers. A total of 25 players from 13 different teams were due to be involved for their countries.

The organisation also filed a lawsuit against FIFA in the Swiss courts for infraction of competition rules, adding that domestic leagues had already accepted a new match window in January 2022 to accommodate matches disrupted by the global pandemic.

However, CAS denied the interim measures put forward, meaning players will have to be released. LaLiga, which claimed the appeal had been "rejected by the court with no reasoning whatsoever", has reacted by announcing proposed changes to the fixture list for matchweek four.

Barcelona had been due to travel to face Sevilla on September 11, but that game is set to be postponed, along with the top-flight meeting between Villarreal and Deportivo Alaves.

There have also been changes to kick-off times too, with Real Madrid now set to host Celta Vigo in the late game on Sunday. That match could well see the debut of Kylian Mbappe at the newly developed Santiago Bernabeu, should his move from Paris Saint-Germain be completed before the transfer window closes.

LaLiga issued a lengthy statement while announcing the planned alterations to the schedule, as well as a warning that the "senseless situation" could be set to happen again during the October international break, too.

"We emphasise that, due to FIFA's decision, the affected players will rejoin their club teams on Friday after having played three games, and many of them will play league matches on Saturday or Sunday, clearly not being in a position to compete under equal conditions with their clubs," the statement read.

"LaLiga submitted this request to the CAS in defence of the integrity of the LaLiga competition and the rights of clubs affected by players being called up for international duty with CONMEBOL national teams, due to the two-day extension of the FIFA period in September and October 2021.

"Other confederations such as UEFA and CONCACAF did not extend their match calendar despite scheduling the same number of matches (three). These confederations made the effort to adapt their fixture schedule to a maximum of 10 days (until Wednesday), so as not to disrupt national league competitions.

"In addition, this problem occurs after the domestic leagues, together with their clubs, already made an effort to admit a new FIFA window (for all confederations except UEFA) in January 2022, to accommodate match dates previously affected by the pandemic.

"We will encounter this senseless situation once again in October, this time affecting Matchday 9 of LaLiga Santander."

FIFA also issued a statement following the CAS ruling, confirming it now expects all players to be released to play in South America.

"The compromise decision to add two additional days rather than three as requested by the South American confederation CONMEBOL was taken by the competent FIFA body after consulting all relevant stakeholders and after taking into account all relevant circumstances, in particular, the challenges created by the Covid pandemic and especially health considerations for players," the statement read.

"Today's CAS decision confirms the legality of FIFA's decision and entirely rejects the arguments made by Spain's LaLiga.

"On Wednesday, FIFA President Gianni Infantino called for a show of solidarity from all member associations, leagues, and clubs, to do what is right and fair for the global game.

"We now expect the release of players for the upcoming FIFA World Cup qualifiers in South America to occur in accordance with the recent FIFA decision, the legality and legitimacy of which has today been recognised in today's CAS ruling."

Related items

  • Xavi: Alaves win shows there is life in Barcelona yet Xavi: Alaves win shows there is life in Barcelona yet

    Barcelona head coach Xavi says Sunday's 1-0 win at Alaves shows that there is life in the Blaugrana yet.

    Frenkie de Jong netted an 88th-minute winner to clinch the points for Xavi's side, who move up to fifth in LaLiga, one point behind fourth-placed Atletico Madrid.

    Barcelona bossed possession (76-24 percent) and generated 10-6 shots with 4-2 on target, getting their just reward with the Dutchman's late goal.

    "It cost us a lot, but they were three crucial points and the team needed and deserved them," Xavi told reporters. "The sun has risen again, this victory shows that there is life."

    He added: "It means a lot of confidence, continuing to believe in what we do."

    Barcelona will enjoy a break before their next league game against Spanish champions Atletico Madrid on Sunday 6 February.

    “We are in the fight, one point away from the Champions League," Xavi said. "These days are going to come in handy. They will come in very handy."

    The Barcelona boss was also complimentary towards teenager Pedri, who has only just returned to the fold following a thigh injury. Pedri made his first LaLiga start since August.

    "He’s a marvellous little player, and at 19, to do everything well is spectacular," Xavi said.

    "How he looks in possession, how he perceives the game, he is excellent and the model player. He can lead by character, quality, ambition, it’s great to have him back in the team."

  • Milan boss Pioli stresses importance of victory over Inter after Juve stalemate Milan boss Pioli stresses importance of victory over Inter after Juve stalemate

    Milan boss Stefano Pioli believes failure to beat Inter in their next Serie A game will end their title chances and leave them to battle for a Champions League qualification spot instead.

    The Rossoneri ended the weekend four points adrift of leaders Inter having played a game more after a dire 0-0 draw with Juventus at San Siro.

    It marked the first goalless draw between the two giants in the Italian top flight since December 2007.

    Milan face their neighbours on February 5, with Pioli suggesting anything less than a win will be fatal to their Scudetto hopes.

    "We knew the games against Juventus and Inter would say a great deal about our future," he told DAZN.

    "If we don't beat Inter, then our campaign will be very similar to last season, when we won at the end to go second and risked crashing out of the Champions League places.

    "We have our way of playing and must realise that if we want to achieve something extraordinary again, we need to give everything. I saw many individual performances of a very high level today.

    "We had the right performance for our circumstances and the opposition, but were lacking precision in the penalty area.

    "We tried to be dangerous and limited Juventus to no chances. I don't think it was a tactical issue, as we had players in the box, but got the final ball wrong.

    "The state of the pitch didn't help either, as we had some bad first touches, had to take extra touches to get it under control and that slowed us down."

    Indeed, Zlatan Ibrahimovic's first-half withdrawal through injury was caused by the state of the pitch, Pioli confirmed.

    "Ibra felt pain in the Achilles tendon," he added. "He blamed the pitch, which was very hard, so we hope he can recover over the next few days."

    Milan's Pierre Kalulu was part of a defence that did not allow Juve a single shot on target and the 21-year-old wants to see an improvement in attack.

    "It's a positive statistic for everyone in the team and not just for us defenders," he told Milan TV. "We did well and must continue like this.

    "It's an important game for us and for the fans. Compared to tonight, we need to do better up front if we are to bring home the three points."

  • 'I hope there will be many more' - Ramos delighted with first PSG goal 'I hope there will be many more' - Ramos delighted with first PSG goal

    Sergio Ramos hopes his maiden Paris Saint-Germain goal will be the first of many after opening his account for the club.

    The defender was on target in the second half at the Parc des Princes as the runaway Ligue 1 leaders enjoyed a commanding 4-0 victory over Reims.

    Ramos was making only his second league start for PSG, with injury problems meaning he has endured a challenging start to life in the French capital since making the switch from Real Madrid.

    The 35-year-old was thrilled to mark his return to the starting line-up with a goal and 90 minutes under his belt.

    "I am very happy for this victory and for my first goal with this team," Ramos told Amazon Prime Video. "I'm glad I played 90 minutes. I like to have the support of the fans. It's good to have taken the three points.

    "This is my first goal with PSG and I hope there will be many more. The important thing is to improve physically day after day and show the best version of myself to the team."

    Mauricio Pochettino, whose side extended their unbeaten home run in Ligue 1 to 14 matches, also expressed his delight for Ramos.

    "I'm happy for him. It's important for him to finish a game," the head coach said. "In addition, with his goal, he validated all this. We will still work on his physical form.

    "We didn't play the way we wanted to do in the first half. Then we made a lot of mistakes.

    "In the second [half], we played better – with more pressure and presence. We found spaces, we scored, and continue to move forward."

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.