Live

Highlights on Off The Ball

07:00 AM-12:00 PM

Highlights on Off The Ball
Spanish FA agree deal to host...
Soccer

Spanish FA agree deal to host SuperCopa in Saudi Arabia for 3 years

Richie McCormack
Richie McCormack

16:05 11 Nov 2019

The Spanish Football Federation have announced a deal that will see the Spanish Super Cup held in Saudi Arabia for three years. 

The decision flies in the face of a memo from UEFA President Alexander Ceferin asking governing bodies not to hold domestic competitions in Saudi Arabia.

The first edition will be played on 8-12 of January in Jeddah.

It's reported that the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) will pocket €40m for each of the three seasons the Super Copa is staged in the gulf state.

AS say that Barcelona defender Gerard Pique acted as an intermediary for the deal through his Kosmos sports events company.

The announcement is due to be met with some controversy given Saudi Arabia's appalling human rights record.

Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was killed and dismembered at his own country's consulate in Istanbul in October of 2018.

Saudi Arabia also routinely jails activists, has questionable treatment of women, is a country where homosexuality is illegal, and has engaged in mass executions.

The states deals with everyone from WWE to UFC have been seen as an exercise in 'sportswashing', ie an effort to improve a country's reputation via the staging of high-profile sporting events.

The RFEF say their agreement with the Saudi Arabian Football Federation will allow women into the stadium in Jeddah with no restrictions on the clothes they wear or seats the occupy.

It's also claimed that the deal will see the launch of a new women's soccer competition in the state.

Such moves to welcome women to the sport may go some way to appease UEFA President Ceferin who told reporters in September, "We know that two countries in the world [Saudi Arabia and Iran] do not allow women and girls to watch [men’s] football.

“We can not punish anyone … but that does not mean we have to be quiet.

"So our advice to 55 federations and all clubs will be to ensure that their teams do not play in these countries or against teams from these countries where the basic rights of women are not respected."

The RFEF say the new competition will be played in winter to lighten the schedule of competing clubs, and will be played on a 'final four' basis.

The 2020 competing teams will be Barcelona, Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid and Valencia.

Their statement also says the deal will help improve a mooted joint-bid for the 2030 World Cup from Spain and Portugal.

Grass-roots football, women's football and futsal are all set to benefit from that €40m-a-year of Saudi money the RFEF claim.

Subscribe to Off The Ball's YouTube channel for more videos, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for the latest sporting news and content.


Read more about

Atletico Madrid Barcelona RFEF Real Madrid Saudi Arabia Spanish Football Federation Spanish Super Cup Sportswashing Super Copa Ufc Valencia WWE

Live: Title

Description

Added to queue
Removed from queue

On Air

Share

Share

Next up in queue

Title
Description
Duration

There are currently no podcasts in the queue

Go to podcasts

On Air

Highlights on Off The Ball

Highlights on Off The Ball

07:00 AM-12:00 PM

Share

Up next

Richie’s Isolation Mix

Richie’s Isolation Mix

12:00 PM-01:00 PM

Share

LIVE: OTB Weekend

LIVE: OTB Weekend

01:00 PM-01:30 PM

Share

LIVE: The Saturday Panel

LIVE: The Saturday Panel

01:30 PM-02:30 PM

Share

LIVE: OTB Weekend

LIVE: OTB Weekend

02:30 PM-03:00 PM

Share

LIVE: OTB Football Saturday

LIVE: OTB Football Saturday

03:00 PM-05:00 PM

Share

Highlights on Off The Ball

Highlights on Off The Ball

05:00 PM-12:00 AM

Share

Repeat: OTB AM

Repeat: OTB AM

12:00 AM-02:00 AM

Share

Repeat: Off The Ball

Repeat: Off The Ball

02:00 AM-05:00 AM

Share

Repeat: OTB AM

Repeat: OTB AM

05:00 AM-07:00 AM

Share

Highlights on Off The Ball

Highlights on Off The Ball

07:00 AM-12:00 PM

Share

00:00:00 / 00:00:00

Share on