This season, for the first time in its 89-year history, LaLiga will hold official games on foreign soil after a 15-year agreement was signed with multinational media, sports and entertainment group Relevent in New York today. The venture, whose purpose is to cultivate and promote football in the United States and Canada as part of LaLiga's expansion, will also serve as a platform leading up to the 2026 World Cup which will take place in North America.
LaLiga match to be played in the United States
The operation will support the league’s growth in the United States and Canada through consumer-related activities including youth academies, development of youth football coaches, marketing agreements, consumer activations, exhibition matches and plans to stage an official LaLiga match played in the United States.
Called LaLiga North America, the newly-founded organization will work to develop football culture in the USA and Canada using the unequalled assets of LaLiga, widely considered the world’s best football league featuring internationally recognized clubs and players. In addition, North America will be directly exposed to the Spain's vibrant football culture - known around the world for its passion, drama, history, flair and creativity.
Stephen Ross, chairman and owner of Relevent, explained: “This extraordinary joint venture is the next giant leap in growing soccer’s popularity in North America. This unique relationship will create new opportunities for millions of North American soccer fans to experience the most passionate, exciting, and highest level of soccer in the world.”
LaLiga President Javier Tebas added: “We’re devoted to growing the passion for soccer around the world. This ground-breaking agreement is certain to give a major impulse to the popularity of the beautiful game in the U.S. and Canada. Relevent has filled stadiums across the U.S. with the International Champions Cup, we’re thrilled to partner with them on a joint mission to grow soccer in North America.”
One LaLiga game to be played Stateside
According to El País, the idea is to stage one LaLiga game in North America from this season, with Barcelona and Real Madrid as the most likely clubs to take part. “This partnership demonstrates LaLiga’s vision and foresight to be the top soccer league in the world,” said Relevent CEO Danny Sillman who negotiated the deal directly with La Liga. “Combining LaLiga’s long tradition of excellence and unparalleled international reputation with Relevent’s expertise in this market will accelerate the growth and popularity of soccer in North America and LaLiga’s global brand.”