Dubai: Kick-off timings are at the heart of Spanish football’s latest plans to connect with its fans in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region, according La Liga president Javier Tebas.
In Dubai on Monday to officially open La Liga’s first regional office outside of Spain, Tebas told Gulf News: “La Liga is working on the best feasible kick-off timings in order to reach as many fans as possible in this region. It’s a challenge but within the next month we will have more news.”
Fernando Sanz, general director of La Liga’s Dubai office, said that of the 400 million people who tune into watch the El Clasico match between Real Madrid and Barcelona, 87 million are from the Mena region, and of the 350 million population in the Mena region, 126 million will watch a La Liga match at some point during the season.
As well as locating here to attract sponsorship opportunities for La Liga’s 20 clubs, Tebas promised two-way collaboration in order to further tap the market.
“We want to open football schools here not only as star factories but more to share values and experience, channeling that into good habits and nutrition,” he said.
Last year a joint promotion with Burger King in the region saw 1.5 million La Liga glasses distributed with meals. La Liga will also launch an Arabic version of its website and Tebas has not ruled out the possibility of staging friendly matches in the region.