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El Clasico postponed over Catalonia Protests

El Clasico postponed over Catalonia Protests

MADRID, Oct 18: The Clasico between Barcelona and Real Madrid, Spain’s biggest football match, has been postponed due to protests in Catalonia, the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) announced Friday. The two clubs have until 10:00am (0800 GMT) Monday to find a new date, which will be decided by the RFEF if they cannot reach an agreement. The original fixture was due to take place at Barca’s Camp Nou on October 26. Two dates reportedly being considered are Wednesday, December 18, when other Spanish teams are involved in the Copa del Rey, and Saturday, December 7. The Clasico was set to be Barca’s first home game since nine pro-independence leaders were sentenced to imprisonment Monday for their role in the illegal referendum over Catalan independence in 2017. The ruling has sparked violent demonstrations across the city and there were fears protestors would use the match against Real to stage further acts of unrest. Barcelona’s football club, which is regarded as a symbol of Catalanism, responded Monday with a statement insisting “prison sentences are not the solution”. La Liga then proposed to the RFEF that the venue of the Clasico be changed from Camp Nou to Real’s Santiago Bernabeu but neither club were keen to accept the switch.

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