La Liga Bosses Reveal Global Plans with New Tournament Launch

By Community | January 10, 2014

La Liga bosses have revealed theyhave launched a new tournament called the “LFP World Challenge” which will see exhibition games played in Europe, try North and South America and Asia in order to promote Spain overseas.

The ambitious plan, pills which would see games played in countries including the United States, discount China, Colombia, Mongolia and Turkey, and will also feature teams from other nations, was launched on Thursday by Spanish Football League (LFP) president Javier Tebas and Spain’s sports minister Miguel Cardenal.

Tebas said that the idea was to leverage the appeal of Real Madrid and Barcelona and advertise both the Spanish game and improve the country’s overall image overseas.

“The objective is to generate confidence and value in the Spanish brand and football can play a part in this,” he said. “La Liga puts Spain’s brand on a global level. For example, El Clasico, which has 400 million spectators. All our clubs are going to unite with this global experience, so that Spain’s brand can keep growing.”

Early details of the tournament suggest the idea is to play the games over three years — with first phase of games [to be called “Time of Challenge”] to be held in summer 2014 — either at the end of the regular club season, or during pre-season for the 2014-15 campaign.

Summer 2015 will see more games [the “Challenger Select Series”] in which non-Spanish teams will also be invited to play. The Spanish team with best results over these games will play in a final during summer 2016 against the club that has won the most La Liga titles in the previous three seasons.

Tebas said games would be hosted in cities all over the world, with the aim of promoting both Spain and Spanish football.

“We will travel to Houston, New York, Mexico City, Monterrey, Guadalajara, Peru, Colombia, Venezuela, Argentina, China, Indonesia, Mongolia, Malaysia, Turkey…,” he said. “There is no financial value if we do not go out around the world.”

Tebas said he had been given “a commitment” that Madrid and Barca would take part.

“We would have to fit with how their preseasons are, but we have a commitment from them,” he said.

Sports minister Miguel Cardenal explained how the games were a chance for Spanish clubs — which currently owe at least 650 million euros in back taxes between them — to do something positive for the currently troubled Spanish economy.

“Spanish football generates recognition and admiration all over the world,” Cardenal said. “The LFP, like the rest of Spanish sport, is giving a lesson in how to help the economic recovery of our country.

“There will be a football match and Spanish Experience, a business event that will accompany the football, and it will serve to help Spanish businesses grow. Seminars. Congresses. I think that Spanish football owes Spanish society.”

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