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Barça pulled out of Miami game over threat of European ban

Among the sanctions considered by Uefa for going against the governing body were Champions League exclusion and a ban on international duty for players.

Barça pulled out of Miami game over threat of European ban

Barcelona have decided against playing their LaLiga fixture against Girona in the United States after learning of the barrage of sanctions that the club would face if they went ahead with the game without the permission Uefa and Fifa.

Among the punishments on the table for the club and its players is expulsion from the Champions League for one or possibly two seasons and a ban imposed by Fifa on Barça’s international players from representing their countries for a similar period of time.

Aleksander Ceferin, the president of Uefa, told AS in Dublin on December 3 that nobody had consulted the European governing body about the game LaLiga chief Javier Tebas wants to stage in Miami, “but in any case [LaLiga] lacks permits that have not yet been applied for, for a start those needed from the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), US Soccer, Uefa and Concacaf. The game is not going to go ahead.”

LaLiga "lacks the power to stage Barça-Girona in the US"

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Ceferin met with RFEF president Luis Rubiales in Valencia on Wednesday evening and told his counterpart, who has been against the idea of a Liga game in Miami from the outset, that he agrees with Barcelona’s decision not to enter into conflict with their national federation.

But the battle does not end there. The RFEF and LaLiga were due to meet in court on Thursday to hammer out some common ground on the proposed game in Miami but Tebas decided to call it off after learning of Barcelona’s decision, which was announced on Monday through a club statement. “What Tebas wanted was a court order that would permit him to organize the game in Miami, but he has been forced to change his strategy,” RFEF sources told AS. "LaLiga confused their organizational competencies with the powers of the regulatory body, which lie exclusively with the RFEF, but they decided to attempt the path of negotiation because they are determined not to give up on this idea.”

Tebas signed a deal with US sports promotion company Relevent to stage LaLiga games over a period of 15 years in North America and although he has elected not to seek a judicial ruling over the Barça-Girona game in Miami, the LaLiga president will continue along the legal route to achieve his principle aim: taking official LaLiga games outside of Spain.

There is a lawsuit that will continue to go ahead,” Tebas said. “What we have done is to withdraw our request for a judicial stay so that the [Barça-Girona] game can go ahead on January 26. But the legal route to play a Liga game in the USA or elsewhere abroad will continue because our main petition is to be able to stage an official Liga game outside of Spain.”


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