Real Madrid and Barcelona have rejected LaLiga’s proposal to move El Clasico from the Nou Camp to the Santiago Bernabeu on October 26, according to Marca.
The Spanish publication reports that the sides do not accept the proposal to reverse the venues for the seasonal double header due to fears over the impact of Catalan protests near the Nou Camp this month.
A ‘large demonstration’ is planned in Barcelona on the day of the game and reports earlier on Wednesday detailed how the league wanted to avoid security being compromised for one of the biggest fixtures on the calendar.
Marca can confirm that the authorities in charge of Spain’s top division have spoken to both clubs and made a formal request that the match be reversed, meaning Madrid would host the first meeting between the two rivals this season.
A statement from the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) read: “RFEF has received the LFP request and has brought the case to the Competition Committee, which has brought the situation to the clubs.
Barcelona are said to see ‘no issue’ with the Nou Camp, despite the protest, while Real Madrid would rather see the match postponed, instead of moved to their stadium.
The request comes amid clashes between Catalan residents and police over the region’s independence from Spain, with a big demonstration due to be held on the same day as the Clasico meeting at Camp Nou.
Madrid has ‘planned small reforms in the stadium’ based on dates where they are due to play away from the Bernabeu – including that of October 26. The opposite fixture is due to take place in Madrid on March 1.
It is noteworthy that the clubs have until Monday to put forward their cases but that even if both refuse the switch, the game could still be moved by the officiating federation.
MARCA report that the initial plan was for Zinedine Zidane’s side to travel the day before El Clasico and sleep overnight in Barcelona.
Chaotic scenes in the city ensued following the sentencing of nine Catalan separatist leaders on Monday, with prison terms of between nine and 13 years having been issued by Spain’s Supreme Court.
Barcelona released a statement after Monday’s sentencing news calling for more dialogue to take place, insisting that “prison is not the solution” for those affected.
It read: “FC Barcelona, as one of the leading entities in Catalonia and in accordance with its historical record for the defence of freedom of expression and the right to decide, today, after the condemnatory ruling issued by the supreme court in relation to the open process against the Catalan civic and political leaders, states the following:
“In the same way that the preventive prison sentence didn’t help to resolve the conflict, neither will the prison sentence given today, because prison is not the solution. The resolution of the conflict in Catalonia must come exclusively from political dialogue.
“Therefore, now more than ever, the club asks all political leaders to lead a process of dialogue and negotiation to resolve this conflict, which should also allow for the release of convicted civic and political leaders.
“FC Barcelona also expresses all its support and solidarity to the families of those who are deprived of their freedom.”