La Liga Plans to Hold Matches in U.S. Starting in 2025-26 Season

La Liga plans to host official Spanish league soccer matches in the United States starting from the 2025-26 season, aiming to boost its presence in the lucrative North American market. This move, which faces resistance from local fans, highlights the increasing globalization of the sport and the importance of tapping into foreign markets.

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Salman Khan
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La Liga Plans to Hold Matches in U.S. Starting in 2025-26 Season

La Liga Plans to Hold Matches in U.S. Starting in 2025-26 Season

La Liga president Javier Tebas has announced intentions to organize official Spanish league soccer matches in the United States starting from the 2025-26 season. The move is aimed at boosting La Liga's presence in the North American market, which is the second-largest market for the league after Spain.

Tebas, a long-time advocate for overseas games, originally planned to stage a league match between Barcelona and Girona at Miami's Hard Rock Stadium in 2018. However, the proposal faced resistance from the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) and FIFA at the time. "The prospect of taking a game abroad is closer than in the past," Tebas said, although his comments do not constitute an official announcement.

The renewed optimism comes after a recent judicial battle with Relevent Sports Group, the company working with La Liga to move matches to the U.S. FIFA backed out of the legal battle with Relevent earlier this April, which Tebas sees as a significant hurdle being cleared. "Without doubt, we will play official games abroad," he stated confidently.

Tebas justified the decision by pointing out that other competitive leagues are also expanding their reach internationally. "They are coming, and we cannot allow them to overtake us," he emphasized. The plan is part of La Liga's strategy to maintain its position as one of the world's elite leagues, especially given the growing financial power of the Premier League and recent investments in the Saudi Pro League.

Why this matters: La Liga's move to play official matches in the United States could set a precedent for other top European leagues to follow suit, potentially changing the landscape of domestic soccer competitions. It also highlights the increasing globalization of the sport and the importance of tapping into lucrative foreign markets.

While the plan presents commercial opportunities, it is likely to face criticism from local fans in Spain who may feel disenfranchised by having fewer meaningful home games to attend. Tebas acknowledged that other leagues are also attempting to hold matches abroad, stating, "We cannot allow them to overtake us." The impact on match-going supporters remains a concern as La Liga looks to proceed with its position in the North American market ahead of the 2026 World Cup hosted by the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.

Key Takeaways

  • La Liga plans to host official matches in the US starting 2025-26 season.
  • Goal is to boost La Liga's presence in the lucrative North American market.
  • Previous attempts faced resistance from Spanish FA and FIFA, but now have legal backing.
  • Move aims to maintain La Liga's status as one of the world's elite leagues.
  • Plan may face criticism from Spanish fans over fewer home games, but seen as necessary.