Spanish FA Want Copa Del Rey Final Played in Front of Fans, Says Luis Rubiales

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistMarch 18, 2020

Spanish Royal Football Federation (RFEF) president Luis Rubiales gives a press conference on November 19, 2019 at Las Rozas football sports city near Madrid. - Luis Enrique will return as coach of Spain and replace Robert Moreno ahead of Euro 2020, the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) confirmed on November 19, 2019. Moreno took charge in June after Luis Enrique had resigned to take care of his daughter Xana, who died in August of bone cancer.

The Spanish FA wants there to be fans at the 2019-20 Copa del Rey final rather than play it behind closed doors, according to president Luis Rubiales.

Real Sociedad and Athletic Bilbao were originally scheduled to play the final of Spain's domestic cup competition on April 18 at Seville's Estadio de La Cartuja, but it has been postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Rubiales said a new date has yet to be found, but he made assurances his organisation is eager to make sure fans can attend when the game is eventually played, per Goal:

"There is no date. We valued May 31 and communicated to the Royal Household. Seeing what has happened in the last 10 days we have paralysed it. The presidents of Athletic Club and Real Sociedad will be in the negotiations. But it is important to say that we want the final to be with fans."

In the quarter-finals of this year's Copa, Athletic ousted Barcelona and La Real knocked out Real Madrid to ensure neither of Spain's biggest clubs would appear in the final for the first time in a decade. 

In the semi-finals, Athletic then got past Granada and La Real beat second-tier Mirandes to ensure an all-Basque final in the Copa del Rey:

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Per Sid Lowe on ESPN FC, it is set to be "bigger than any game in Spain this year."

As with all other football across Europe, though, it is impossible to currently predict when the match might go ahead.

UEFA announced on Tuesday that it intends to complete all club competitions by June 30. In a bid to free up time to allow that to happen, UEFA Euro 2020, which was scheduled to start on June 12, has been postponed until next summer:

But there is no guarantee UEFA will be able to meet its timetable.

La Liga, meanwhile, is currently suspended for two matchdays, but resumption at the beginning of April is already looking like an impossibility given the ongoing spread of the coronavirus.

Per CNN, Spain is the second-worst-affected country in Europe behind Italy, with 9,191 cases and 853 deaths as of Tuesday.