Spanish court rules against Real Madrid’s claim that ‘Boost LaLiga’ CVC deal was illegal

February 28 – A Spanish court has dismissed legal action by Real Madrid and Athletic Bilbao against LaLiga over a €1.9 billion investment deal to finance scores of clubs.

The two opponents had claimed that LaLiga’s arrangement with private equity firm CVC, known as ‘Boost La Liga’ and signed in December, was illegal.

The money was in exchange for an 8.2% share of the league’s income from broadcasting and sponsorship rights for the next 50 years.

An initial 37 of Spain’s 42 first and second-division clubs voted in favour of the agreement. But Madrid, Barcelona and Athletic led opposition to the plan and were subsequently excluded from its terms.

They then opted to sue LaLiga – with backing from the Spanish football federation (RFEF) – arguing that the agreement violated clubs’ rights, although Barcelona and the RFEF later withdrew from the case.

Madrid, Barcelona and Athletic argued that the deal was “an illegal transaction that causes irreparable damage to the Spanish football sector as a whole” and proposed an alternative investment package, which they said offered better value for money. But the court’s ruling did not find anything unlawful in the deal.

The investment is in the process of being distributed amongst participating clubs, which has already seen 18 stadium developments completed or approved across the Spanish top division. In a statement the league responded: “LaLiga has today learned of the ruling … dismissing the lawsuit filed by Athletic Club and Real Madrid CF against LaLiga.”

“The ruling confirms the legality of the agreement with CVC, stating that it complies with the legal and statutory frameworks in force. The ruling also concludes that the transaction with CVC does not infringe on the rights of the participating LaLiga clubs, arguing that the agreements reached ‘were made in a manner that respects the rights and obligations of the clubs, without imposing unfair conditions on them or significantly altering their participation and rights within the competition.”

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