La Liga, also known as Campeonato Nacional de Liga de Primera División is the premier men’s football division of the Spanish Football League. The league was well into its 2020 season when in late March it was put on indefinite postponements due to the outbreak of coronavirus. At the time the league announced that it would not reason the season until it received official approval from the Spanish government. That approval has recently been granted with certain requirements having to be met.
La Liga The Spanish league
The division is the top in the Spanish Football League’s and is overseen by the national professional football league. It is also known as Liga Nacional de Fútbol Profesional in Spain. 20 teams compete in the division with the bottom three ring be relegated to the Segunda División Spain second highest football division.
The top two teams from that division as well as its playoff winner are then promoted to La Liga. The division since its inception has had a total of 62 teams have participated in it with the top two being Real Madrid and FC Barcelona. Both teams have impressive records with real Madrid having won the division championship 33 times. FC Barcelona having won the championship for the last two years.
Over the last seven years La Liga has consistently been the top football league in Europe according to the Union of European Football Association. It also has produced the continent’s best football clubs over the last decade.
There can be no better evidence to this fact then that members of the league have one numerous title such as the champions league 18 times. The UEFA European league 11 times, and the FIFA club World Cup seven times. Further evidence can be seen in the number of Ballon d’Or awards. Individual members of the division have been awarded, these awards include FIFA world player of the year and UEFA club footballer of the year.
It speaks volumes for talent of the league’s players that so many of these awards have been awarded to players from one country. another claim to fame is the fact that it is one of the most popular professional sport leagues in the world. Last year’s average attendance being over 26,000 spectators for league matches. These numbers put La Liga as the third highest popular professional football league in the world after the English Premier league and Bundesliga.
Effects of the coronavirus over the league
The first major effects of the coronavirus on La Liga came in early March when the league announced it was going on hiatus for two weeks. The decision was made in the wake of Real Madrid going into voluntary isolation after one of its members tested positive for the virus.
As the pandemic worsened the decision was made by the league to put the season on indefinite postponement until the Spanish government gave permission to resume. The big question on many people’s mind was how the league would play out the remainder of the season if it reopens.
It is a question that has been faced by every major sports league across the world all the way up to the International Olympic Committee (who have postponed the 2020 games to 2021).
Reopening the League
La Liga received the answer as to whether or not they could finish out this when Spain’s prime minister Pedro Sanchez made a major announcement. He stated that the league plus other Spanish boards could reopen on June 8, provided that they were in compliance with guidelines set forth by Spain’s Ministry of health.
While these guidelines are yet to be announced it is likely that they will follow the same one’s being used by England’s Premier league. Those guidelines being: first all players and staff will have mandatory tests to determine if they are currently infected by the coronavirus. Second social distancing will be maintained as much as possible until such time until is deemed unnecessary (no tackling until given the okay).
Thirdly all games and practices will be held behind closed doors (empty arenas). While it’s still too early to tell even in the England Premier league if these are effective for football there are two others sports that show it works. These two sports are the United States Horseracing and NASCAR.
While it is true that both sports have different criteria then football the health regulations, they are following are essentially the English Premier league is currently working with. The league has already begun the testing of players for the virus so this is one of the criteria then they are already well on the way to reopening the season.
Though the league will have the ability to reopen on June 8 it has stated that because this is a Monday, they would prefer to reopen on Friday 12th. The league has yet to announce any revisions to the seasons game schedule. When the schedules announce it will be of particular interest to Real Madrid and FC Barcelona.
When the season was postponed the two teams were in the middle of a fierce race for the top position in the league. Currently FC Barcelona sits at the top of the of the league’s rankings by two points. So, as the teams and their fans eagerly await the league’s decision on when exactly to restart the season, they also welcomed the return of normalcy represented by La Liga.
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