The Catalan Derby In The States Continues To Sound Like A Disaster Waiting To Happen
Spanish newspaper SPORT are reporting that the Catalan derby between Girona vs Barcelona will be the first La Liga match played on north American soil but the decision to do so continues to cause a stir.
The match is due to take place at the Hard Rock Stadium, Miami, on the weekend commencing January 26 and it's emerged that Girona are going above and beyond to make up for it not being played in Catalonia.
1,500 flights will be available for Girona season ticket holders, although they will have to provide a €500 deposit, which will be returned after the trip.
A potential overnight stay in Florida could also be made available, with a €600 deposit needed.
Moreover, fans who don't fancy the trip to Miami, or can't make it, will also be refunded as 5,000 free tickets are being made available for the away game at the Camp Nou later this month.
A 20 or 40 per cent return on their season ticket price will also be arranged depending on whether supporters take advantage of the offer for the Nou Camp match.
However, further issues surround the controversial clas across the pond. Cadena Cope, via Football Espana, say that no Catalan flags or symbols will be allowed in the stadium whatsoever, while 40,000 Spanish flags will be handed out to spectators and the national anthems of both Spain and the United States will be played before the game.
So before La Liga's ever match in :flag_us:, 40,000 Spain flags will be shared round the ground... the 2 teams playing? From Catalunya. FCBarcelona, a fan base well known for their opposition to Spain & Girona home of Carles Puigdemont, the head of the Catalan Independence movement https://t.co/cZRboub3JQ
- Eli (@ElMengem) September 6, 2018
More info on the Girona v Barcelona match that is planned to take place in USA:
- No Catalan flags will be allowed at the match.
- 40,000 Spanish flags will be provided inside the stadium.
Pretty clear to see this isn't going to end well... pic.twitter.com/Sz59bCjxe2
- Footy Accumulators (@FootyAccums) September 6, 2018
Considering fans of both sets of clubs are more than likely to be in favour of Catalan independence, coupled with the chaos that has occurred following the Spanish government completely opposing it, it sounds like an utterly ridiculous idea.
All 20 of the La Liga captains held a meeting when news of the 15-year agreement between the Spanish top flight and Relevent (a multinational media, sports and entertainment group) was confirmed.
#LaLiga and RELEVENT partner to promote soccer in the US and Canada. :flag_us::flag_ca:
- LaLiga (@LaLigaEN) August 16, 2018
Diario AS say that both Gerard Pique and Sergio Busquets, two proud Catalunyans, are strongly against the fixture and might opt to pull out if things don't change.
Another huge gripe with the game is the fact that it is sandwiched between the two-legged Copa Del Rey quarter finals ties - which could potentially prove extremely problematic if the two teams get that far.