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LaLiga 2018/19: Madrid derby in doubt
- Updated: September 4, 2018
After starting the season a positive note, Real Madrid will have their task cut out when the players return from the international break as they will be playing five games in two weeks. All the games will be crucial for them as they travel away to face teams like Athletic Bilbao and Sevilla before taking on local rivals Atletico Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu on September 29.
The Madrid derby will have a lot of significance as a win for Los Blancos will give them a lot of confidence as they are gunning for their 34th title. But, there are chances that the game might not be played as the Association of Spanish Footballers (AFE) are considering calling for a strike over the case of Reus star Isaac Cuenca and if it happens, it would be scheduled for 29 and 30 September, matchday 7 of LaLiga, the day of the Real Madrid – Atlético Madrid derby.
LaLiga is refusing to allow Reus to register Issac Cuenca as the league authorities don't believe that he will only be earning 77,000 euros, the minimum pay for a player in the Segunda Division (second division).
It is understood that LaLiga has also refused to register three other players at Reus, Yoda, Vitor and Tito due to the salary cap mess. These players are under contract with Reus which means, they need to rip up their contract with the club and move elsewhere if they want to play.
Cuencas' case, on the other hand, is completely different as he is a free agent. Cuenca left his existing deal with Hapoel Beer Sheva in Israel to return to his hometown club Reus and agreed to be a part of the squad at the club, earning the minimum salary. When the club sent the documentation to LaLiga, the authorities have rejected it as they feel that there was no way the player would have accepted that amount of money, with the suspicion that Cuenca had agreed that as his official salary to avoid the salary cap.
If the matches take place in spite of the strike, it will be the second Madrid derby of the season and the first in the league as Atletico had already defeated Real to win the UEFA Super Cup in the first match of the season between the two teams.