MADRID: The Spanish footballers’ union is seeking to broker peace talks between the league and federation to avert a cancellation of the domestic season writes KEIR RADNEDGE.

Luis Rubiales, president of the Asociación de Futbolistas Espanyoles, told Radio Nacional that he believed the two sides were not so far apart and that the exchange of insults which has erupted since last week served no purpose.

The federation, led by long-serving FIFA and UEFA vice-president Angel Maria Villar, ordered the shutdown after an agreement for the centralised sale of league TV rights was written formally into law by a royal decree.

Villar deemed this to have contravened national and international football federation statutes.

Rubiales, who association had initially supported the federation’s opposition to the terms of the TV deal, said: “We have called for the league and the federation to conciliation. We believe we can reach an agreement if we are all heard and reach a compromise.

“We believe Javier Tebas [LFP president] has given away too much which leaves the players in a very bad place. But this is not only about money. A royal decree cannot be used to come down on just one side of an issue.

“We are always ready to talk but we also have the right to defend our own position because we were ignored over many issues which affect our members directly.”

The shutdown would take effect next Wednesday and would mean the cancellation of the last two rounds of league matches as well as the cup final between Barcelona and Bilbao.

Since the dispute is purely domestic, it is not expected that it will affect Barcelona and Real Madrid’c continuing participation in teh UEFA Champions League.

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