Ter­ror­ist at­tacks mar La Liga’s re­turn

Minute’s si­lence to be held be­fore matches

Global Times - Weekend - - SPORTS -

Spain’s La Liga re­turns on Fri­day un­der the shadow of ter­ror­ist at­tacks in Barcelona and Cam­brils that left at least 14 killed and more than 100 in­jured. The league’s au­thor­i­ties still plan for all 10 La Liga fix­tures to take place, in­clud­ing Barcelona’s match at home to Real Betis on Sun­day. All games across the top two di­vi­sions will be pre­ceded by a minute’s si­lence. “LaLiga has asked the RFEF [Royal Span­ish Foot­ball Fed­er­a­tion] to hold a minute’s si­lence in all matches of the first day of the com­pe­ti­tion in LaLiga San­tander and LaLiga 1l2l3,” La Liga said in a state­ment. Barca’s play­ers held a minute’s si­lence be­fore train­ing on Fri­day, while the club pub­lished a picture of the play­ers and coach­ing staff with the hash­tag “Tot­sSomBarcelona” [“We are all Barcelona”] on its so­cial me­dia chan­nels.

“As a mark of re­spect, the flags will fly at half-mast at the club’s fa­cil­i­ties and the play­ers from both teams will wear black arm­bands in all the club’s matches this week­end,” Barca added in a state­ment.

Barcelona’s other top flight side Es­panyol are away to Sevilla on Satur­day.

“With our hearts still shrink­ing to see Barcelona, our beloved Barcelona, at­tacked vilely by ter­ror and hate, we want to show our sol­i­dar­ity with all the peo­ple af­fected as well as to thank enor­mously all the sup­port re­ceived by both the city and our club,” Es­panyol said in a state­ment.

The league’s big­gest stars Lionel Messi and Cris­tiano Ron­aldo were among those to lead trib­utes to the vic­tims as the shock­ing events of Fri­day un­folded.

“I want to send my con­do­lences and all my sup­port to the fam­i­lies and friends of the vic­tims of the ter­ri­ble at­tack in our beloved Barcelona, in ad­di­tion to to­tally re­ject­ing any act of vi­o­lence,” Barca for­ward Messi, wrote on In­sta­gram.

“We are not go­ing to give up, there are many more of us who want to live in a world in peace, with­out hate and where re­spect and tol­er­ance are the ba­sis of co­ex­is­tence.”

Ron­aldo and his Real Madrid team­mates also showed their sol­i­dar­ity with Barcelona as the two clubs’ fierce ri­valry was for­got­ten at a tragic time.

“Dis­mayed at the news com­ing from Barcelona. All the sup­port and sol­i­dar­ity [to] the fam­ily and friends of the vic­tims,” Ron­aldo wrote on Twit­ter.

That mood was re­flected on the front pages of Spain’s sport news­pa­pers on Fri­day.

“To­day we can’t talk about sport,” splashed Madrid-based Marca.

Tak­ing a line from Barca’s club an­them, Barcelona-based Sport’s head­line ran “Tots units fem força” (to­gether we are stronger).

The first league matches of the sea­son take place on Fri­day night when Le­ganes wel­come Alaves in Madrid be­fore Va­len­cia host Las Pal­mas.

Photo: IC

Marc-An­dre Ter Ste­gen, goal­keeper of FC Barcelona, passes the ball dur­ing the Su­per­copa de Es­pana Su­per­copa Fi­nal 2nd Leg match be­tween Real Madrid and FC Barcelona at Es­ta­dio Santiago Bern­abeu on Wed­nes­day in Madrid, Spain.

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