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SBD Global/August 23, 2012/International Football

La Liga Criticized By Fans, Coaches For Late Kick-Off Times Dictated By TV

After just one match-week, late kick-off times have "been enough to test the patience" of Spanish football fans, according to Jaume Miserachs of MUNDO DEPORTIVO. Most of the criticism has come from games starting at 11pm. Monday night, in Vallecas and Riazor, "fans held signs illustrating their anger toward the TV kick-off times." In Vallecas, there were signs directed at LFP VP Javier Tebas who has "been a strong defender of the kick-off times." In Riazor, a sign read, "I hate modern football, I hate television" with a picture of a footballer kicking a receiver. But the stands are not "the only place that let its voice be heard." Criticism also came from the locker rooms. Malaga Coach Manuel Pellegrini criticized the schedule that will have his team play Mallorca at 11pm Saturday then turn around and play their crucial UEFA Champions League return leg against Panathinaikos on Tuesday. Pellegrini: "We will have an extremely complicated recuperation thanks to the extremely bizarre TV program. We will see if in all of the Champions League someone has Barça, Madrid or Valencia playing at 11pm on a Saturday followed by a Champions League game on a Tuesday. We will see if they give them the same treatment that they are giving Malaga" (MUNDO DEPORTIVO, 8/22).
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