RFEF Chief Luis Rubiales: 'Unfair' to Hand Barcelona Title If Season Unfinished

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistMarch 18, 2020

Spanish Royal Football Federation (RFEF) president Luis Rubiales attends a press conference on November 27, 2019 in Madrid during the official presentation of Spain's coach Luis Enrique . - Luis Enrique returns as coach of Spain and replaces Robert Moreno ahead of Euro 2020. Moreno took charge in June after Luis Enrique had resigned to take care of his daughter Xana, who died in August of bone cancer. (Photo by GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP) (Photo by GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP via Getty Images)

Royal Spanish Football Federation president Luis Rubiales has said he does not support the idea of having La Liga's table stand as it is if the season cannot be completed, meaning leaders Barcelona would not be handed the title.

He spoke after UEFA announced on Tuesday its intent for all seasons to be completed by June 30 amid the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic:

Per Alfredo Matilla of AS, Rubiales said: "The 19-20 season has to end with the same rules and not change, although the situation is exceptional. I cannot guarantee that the competition will end, as others have risked saying, before June 30. It is unfair that the competition ends with the classification as it is now."

"Competitions will have to be completed if possible by June 30 although this is not a red line," he added, per Tom Allnutt of the Agence France-Presse. "We'll fight for what is fair to ensure the league reflects what happens on the pitch."

Allnutt relayed further comments from Rubiales:

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June 30 is the typical cut-off point at the end of the season for Europe's top five leagues and others that run from August to May, as reflected in player contracts.

Extending the 2019-20 season beyond that date would be problematic in part because a number of players' contracts expire at that point.

However, as ESPN's Dale Johnson noted, finishing the season by June 30 will also be difficult amid the outbreak of COVID-19:

Johnson suggested alternative ways of deciding the final standings won't be easily completed either:

Barcelona hold a two-point lead over Real Madrid in La Liga with 11 matches of the season remaining. The lead atop the table has changed hands between the pair in each of the last three matchdays.

Los Blancos have the superior head-to-head record after they beat Barcelona 2-0 at the Santiago Bernabeu on March 1, having played out a 0-0 draw at the Camp Nou in December.

Further down the table, Getafe are outside the UEFA Champions League places on goals scored, as they have the same points and goal difference as fourth-place Real Sociedad. They beat La Real earlier in the campaign, but head-to-head record only comes into play once they've faced off twice.

Atletico Madrid are only one point behind Getafe and Real Sociedad and two points adrift of third-place Sevilla.

At the bottom of the table, 20th-place Espanyol are six points from safety, while Real Mallorca and Leganes are one and three points from safety, respectively.

On Tuesday, the number of confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Spain exceeded 11,000, with a death toll of 491, per Reuters. Only China, Italy and Iran have been hit harder.