La Liga winter break curtailed

AFP
The traditional two-week winter break in Spain's La Liga will be reduced this season in a bid to ease fixture congestion ahead of next year's European Championships (AFP Photo/Cristina Quicler)
The traditional two-week winter break in Spain's La Liga will be reduced this season in a bid to ease fixture congestion ahead of next year's European Championships (AFP Photo/Cristina Quicler)

Madrid (AFP) - The traditional two-week winter break in Spain's top flight will be reduced this season in a bid to ease fixture congestion ahead of next year's European Championships it was announced on Wednesday.

Just last week the league passed significant changes to the calendar to accomodate Barcelona's participation in the Club World Cup, which included moving the final round of league fixtures back a week.

That decision was criticised by Spain boss Vicente del Bosque as it meant La Liga would finish on May 22 with his side's defence of the European title to start in France on June 10.

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However, an agreement between the players' union (AFE), the league and the federation means a full round of fixtures will now take place on December 30 with the final weekend of the season reverting back to its original date of May 15.

The Copa del Rey final has also been moved back to its original scheduled date of May 21.

"The offer of the AFE to play during the Christmas break, normally a holiday period for professional football allows for an optimisation of the calendar," a statement from the Spanish sports council.

"It allows the activities in the Primera Division to finish a week earlier and therefore allows Vicente del Bosque better preparation for the Spanish national team for Euro 2016."

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