Spains Primera Liga Closer To Threat of Strike

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Spain's professional soccer league, the LFP, is sticking by its threat to postpone a round of matches next month.

The dispute centres around the push by the Spanish government to have one La Liga game on every match day shown on free-to-air TV. Talks between league officials, the government and parliamentary groups had failed to produce any progress, the LFP, which represents first and second division clubs, said in a statement on its website.

"Therefore, the LFP stands by the decision... to postpone the match day which corresponds to April 3, until there are concrete developments in the dialogue with the administration," the statement said.

The LFP, which has the backing of the Spanish football federation (RFEF), wants to scrap the free match rule to help strengthen clubs' bargaining powers in negotiations on audiovisual rights with TV companies.

They also want guarantees about how much cash they are entitled to receive from betting and lottery revenue. La Liga leaders Barcelona are due to play at Villarreal, while second-placed Real Madrid host Sporting Gijon on April 2-3 - the weekend under strike threat.