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Spanish FA set to veto Barcelona game in U.S.

Spanish FA set to veto Barcelona game in U.S.
La Liga's hopes to have a regular-season game staged overseas every year had a setback on Friday after the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) sent a letter to La Liga stating that they do not support a plan to play in Miami.

La Liga president, Javier Tebas, confirmed receipt of the letter, but reiterated his optimism.

"We have read the letter, which is pretty long. Obviously they [RFEF] aren't excited about [a match in Miami]," Tebas told reporters. "They are not saying no, they are just requesting more information. I have been talking about this for some time now, so I am optimistic."

The RFEF received a formal request from La Liga, Girona and Barcelona earlier this month detailing plans to move a game to suburban Miami on Jan. 26 as part of a 15-year agreement with Relevent Sports to market the league in North America.

It has not finalised its stance on the proposal, but on Friday, it sent different letters to La Liga, UEFA, FIFA and the two clubs.

"In the letter sent to FIFA, the RFEF has explained its intention not to authorise the game," the organisation told ESPN FC.

Moreover, in the letter addressed to UEFA and FIFA, the RFEF requested the governing bodies share their recommendations regarding the implications of staging a La Liga game outside of Spain.

The RFEF notified La Liga that it is consulting with both organisations regarding which rules could be infringed if a league game was to be played abroad. It also requested La Liga present documents to show it has the approval of the necessary organisations as well as of all top-flight clubs -- not just Girona and Barcelona -- and has demanded more information regarding the organisation of the game.

It also reminded La Liga that a change of venue would affect television contracts and club members and could see certain teams benefit while others would be affected.

La Liga need the support of the RFEF as well as Spain's Sports Council, UEFA, CONCACAF and U.S. Soccer in order to move the game away from Girona's Estadi Montilivi.

Tebas insisted that the RFEF is not saying the match cannot happen, but they are simply requesting more information.
"What they are asking us for is more documentation," Tebas said on Friday. "A committee has been meeting all morning and I have not had time to really study the letter they sent. It is pretty extensive.

We are going to prepare something for them and we are pretty optimistic.

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