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Professional footballers in Chile and the Chilean players association, Sifup, decided to bring their National Championship stoppage to a close.

On Monday afternoon, the footballers decided to approve the agreement that the extended governing body of Sifup reached with the federation, ANFP, in an attempt to make the national championships more competitive, standardise competitions to schedule play within the calendar year once again and get outstanding debts paid from the previous season.

In a meeting held in the National Stadium, the third in less than a month, players debated the scope of a proposal that presents several modifications on what was agreed in the Council of Presidents on 17 June, highlighting the end of non relegation to the 'Primera B' league.

Carlos Soto, Sifup president, said that the decision to get back on the pitches was "unanimous".

However, Soto added that “If Francisco Arrué or David Pizarro is sanctioned or booked now, we would call a stoppage again. Players cannot be sanctioned for what they have said."

In the Primera B league, as opposed to what used to happen, teams will begin to immediately compete to remain in their category: the team finishing last, from a table accumulated over three semesters, will relegate directly in December 2017 after playing a 'Transition Tournament'. Competition will return to the February-to-December calendar in 2018.

To go up to the top flight, the teams will fight for direct promotion reserved for the 2016-2017 champion and another place that will be at stake at the end of 2017 in a promotion battle with the bottom place from a lengthy First Division table. They will be joined by the winner of a 2-leg match between the second place team in the championship that will start this weekend and the champion of the 'Transition Tournament'.

The Second Division (third level, Segunda División) )has benefitted greatly from the dispute. Before the strike, there was no official date to start the tournament or medium term planning to develop this category. After meetings between Sifup and ANFP, there will be two direct promotions in 2017: one at the end of the current season, starting on 20th August, to make 16 teams in Primera B and another at the end of the adaptation championship.


More information:

Footballers in Chile ratify their strike
Chilean footballers refuse to start the season


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Photos Sifup