August 25, 2018 / 11:58 AM / 3 months ago

Soccer-Real’s Lopetegui doubts La Liga's American expansion

MADRID, Aug 25 (Reuters) - Real Madrid coach Julen Lopetegui has cast doubt on the feasibility of La Liga’s plans to stage a game in the United States this season.

The Spanish football league has signed a 15-year partnership with Relevent Sports that will, in theory, see a regular season game played in the U.S. among other partnerships.

The move drew criticism from the Spanish FA and the Spanish Footballer’s Union, with the captains of all clubs in the country’s top division, unanimously agreeing that they would not be willing to take part in such a game.

“We’re obviously thinking about other things, but I’ve seen this and I’m with the players on this one,” Lopetegui told a news conference on Saturday ahead of Sunday’s game at Girona.

“They’ve got arguments and reasons to think what they do and I can’t see it happening, that’s my opinion.”

On the pitch, the new Real boss refused to be drawn on local media reports suggesting his new goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois will make his debut against Girona, replacing Keylor Navas.

“I’m not going to talk about that, tomorrow you’ll see,” Lopetegui said. “We’ve got good goalkeepers, some have arrived later than others but they’re all in good shape and we need to decide.

“After the international break there’ll be other solutions because we’ll be playing in midweek as well at weekends.” (Editing by Ed Osmond)

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