Football

La Liga kick-off times go crazy

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As the first weekend of La Liga kicks off, fixture scheduling is once again one of the main topics of conversation.

Valencia's Saturday night match with Malaga and Sevilla's hosting of Atlético Madrid on Sunday will both kick off at 23:00 Spanish time, meaning they will finish on a different day from that which they kicked-off.

And if you think that's bad, wait until you hear about the match between Osasuna and Villareal in a couple of weeks.

The match at the Estadio El Sadar is scheduled for Saturday August 31 at the same time of 23:00. That means that the match will finish in the very first hours of September. A pub quiz question is certainly in the making here.

Other controversies have included the 2013 Spanish Super Cup match at the Camp Nou, which will kick-off at that 23:00 time, meaning that the Barcelona metro - which closes at midnight midweek - will not be running when the match finishes in the early hours of a Thursday morning.

The late kick-off times, which have become more and more regular in La Liga, are bad enough when during the weekend and public transport generally runs later or away fans can stay the night.

When midweek matches like the Super Cup are played at those times, however, then the likelihood of away fans sacrificing a day or two of work in these tough times to watch their teams is much less.

With matches now running at one of eight or nine different time slots for TV purposes, there always seems to be a match on from Friday night to Monday night in Spain.

That is great for those viewing on TV, but the unsociable times make fans less likely to attend at a time when ticket sales mean more to clubs than they ever have.

There is even talk of a lunchtime Clásico this coming season to suit TV demands from Asia. These are the most important games of the year and are meant for a packed floodlit stadium on a Saturday or Sunday evening.

If we do ever see Barcelona and Real Madrid walk out at breakfast time on a Thursday morning, for example, then we'll know the La Liga fixture schedulers really have lost the plot.

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Topics:
La Liga
Football
Spain Football

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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