See what's happening on Facebook Twitter YouTube Flickr


Luis Rubiales, President of the Association of Spanish Footballers (AFE), has warned that either the more than 200 professional players who have not been paid what was agreed with their clubs will be paid and will be given guarantees that commitments will be complied with, or the 2011-2012 La Liga season ‘will not begin’.


Rubiales issued this warning after meeting representatives of the staff of Racing Santander. That club has owed 1,7 million euros to eleven of its players since last season. The club is currently ranked fifteenth in the Primera División.


‘How are we going to begin a new season with 200 or 300 players in the Primera and Segunda División who haven't been paid and, what's worse, who have no guarantees? What are we to do? Shall we begin the League and bring it to a halt after a month, or will the League stop it because it has problems, or shall we go to court again?’, asked Rubiales, who is demanding not only that players be paid but that measures be taken to prevent a repetition of the situation.


The AFE is proposing that the Professional Football League (LFP) itself, and the institutions, require those who take over the ownership of a club to demonstrate that they have the financial solvency to cope with the budget they are taking on, as happens in England. Because, in their opinion, such an important competition as the Spanish League cannot be based ‘only on good faith’, but on ‘agreements guaranteeing that commitments will be respected’ and preventing ‘anyone from arriving then leaving without complying’.


As an example of this lack of guarantees, Luis Rubiales cited the eleven players to whom Racing has owed various amounts since last season. At the time, they accepted the postponement of their wages for the good of the club, but now they are left in ‘uncertainty’ on whether or not the new owner, the Indian businessman Ahsan Ali Syed, will deliver what was promised.


‘This doesn't happen in other countries, like England, because as soon as anyone goes to purchase a club, whether they come from India, Japan or Spain, no matter what country, they have to provide guarantees that ensure, quite clearly, that the budget they are taking on will be complied with’, he argued.


Rubiales insisted that, if the Spanish League wants to continue claiming to be the best in the world, it will have to live up to that in every respect, including economic and labour matters. ‘This situation has to be done away with. There will be clubs that, limiting themselves to their capabilities, will pay less to their players, and their players will adjust to that. But what can't be accepted is promises of something that can't then be complied with. We have to move to a system of guarantees, a serious system, as in the Netherlands, England or France’, he repeated.


The AFE President said that his Association could perceive ‘harmony’ with its approach in the contacts it has maintained with the Secretary of State for Sport and with the national football federation RFEF, while ‘only one link is missing: the League’.


‘I want to be optimistic: the President of the League has told me he wants us to talk, to sit down to negotiate the new collective agreement, and I've talked to the representative of the G-30... We are finding points of agreement so that players can collect what's due under their contracts, neither more nor less’, he added.