Outspoken La Liga official Tebas set to get UEFA position

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NYON, Switzerland — The outspoken head of Spain’s La Liga is set to join UEFA’s executive committee next week, working alongside the Spanish soccer federation president he has often clashed with.

Spanish league president Javier Tebas was picked by European Leagues, the 30-nation group said Monday, as its delegate to sit on the decision-making committee.

If Tebas is confirmed on April 20 at the annual meeting of 55 UEFA member federations, he will take his place alongside Luis Rubiales, the Spanish federation boss who is a vice-president of the European soccer body.

Tebas and Rubiales have often publicly criticized each other, including over La Liga’s wish to play games in the United States.

Tebas has also been critical of UEFA rules to monitor the spending of wealthy clubs like Paris Saint-Germain, whose president Nasser al-Khelaifi is also a UEFA executive committee member.

The European Leagues group has been represented at UEFA by Swedish official Lars-Christer Olsson. The former UEFA chief executive steps down next week after turning 70 and passing the age limit for re-election.

Tebas is set to get a four-year mandate to 2025. His tenure is likely to see increased pressure on 20-team leagues like La Liga and England's Premier League to reduce to 16 or 18 to ease a congested fixture calendar.

The Champions League is set to expand to 36 teams playing 100 extra matches from 2024 in a format expected to be agreed next Monday by the UEFA executive committee.

Spain is also expected to team up with Portugal to be UEFA’s preferred single bidder to host the 2030 World Cup.

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The Associated Press