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La Liga president lashes out at 'doped' Premier League transfer market

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La Liga president Javier Tebas has taken aim at the amount of money spent by Premier League clubs during the January transfer window, insisting it presents a threat to the sustainability of European football as a whole.


Premier League sides parted with a cool £815m in January, £290m of which came from Chelsea, whereas La Liga’s winter spend sat at closer to £25m and was led by Espanyol’s acquisition of centre-back Cesar Montes from Monterrey for around £7m.

Chelsea, who alone outspent La Liga, the Bundesliga, Serie A and Ligue 1 combined, were an obvious target for Tebas. But the Spanish football chief made a point of highlighting the dangers of the wider Premier League’s spending.

“The British market is a doped market,” Tebas said. “You can see it clearly in this winter market, where Chelsea have made almost half of the signings in the Premier League.

“Following the history of the last few seasons, we have done some work at La Liga, because the Premier League is a competition that loses billions of pounds in the last few years. And this is financed with contributions from the patrons, in this case large American investors who finance at a loss.”

The Premier League does not have specific financial controls on teams’ financial dealings, unlike La Liga, who impose a salary cap which is based on the team’s profits in an attempt to control reckless spending – something Barcelona have battled in recent years.

“[Clubs making big losses] does not happen in the Spanish league and neither does it happen in the German league, especially those two,” Tebas added.

“In our control of economic sustainability, we do not allow contributions to cover losses in these barbaric amounts that are occurring, and that is what makes the difference in the market.

“We also have to recognise that commercially they have a higher turnover than us, but not in the volume of this difference that there is.

“It is quite dangerous that the markets are doped, inflated, as has been happening in recent years in Europe, because that can jeopardise the sustainability of European football.”