Levante strike puts Liga game in jeopardy
The Levante squad’s decision to go on an indefinite strike on Monday night has placed Sunday’s game against Real Madrid in jeopardy.13 May 2008
MADRID - Sunday's Spanish Liga game between Real Madrid and Levante is in jeopardy because the Levante players have gone on strike.
The Levante squad decided unanimously on Monday night to go on an indefinite strike, claiming they have not been paid properly for almost two years.
Levante captain Luis Manuel Rubiales told the media late on Monday that "this is our last chance to draw attention to our problems," because it is their last game in the top flight.
Rubiales insisted that "we don't want to do any harm to Real Madrid, but we have to fight for our rights and for our families."
Rubiales and company were about to go on strike two weeks ago, but on April 25 a last-minute agreement was reached with the Levante board.
The Levante players now claim that the agreement has not been honoured.
"This time we need real 100 per cent guarantees," said Rubiales.
Levante's dire financial situation led to Italian coach Gianni De Biasi leaving in April, with the troubled team then close to relegation.
Levante have only 26 points from 37 games, four points fewer than second-from-bottom Murcia.
Real were planning to celebrate their 31st Liga title in front of home fans before the Levante match, with Spanish federation president Angel Maria Villar presenting to them the league trophy.
If Levante do not turn up in Madrid, they will be heavily fined and have points deduced.
Real will be given the three points automatically, bringing their season's total to 85.
[dpa / Expatica]