Spain’s football league, La Liga, has decided to extend its global branding into the African continent.
CCTV’s Julie Scheier reports from Johannesburg.
Spain\'s football league looking to expand brand in AfricaSpain's football league, La Liga, has decided to extend its global branding into the African continent.
Spain’s top professional soccer league has the world’s best players with Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar and others.
La Liga is now in South Africa and Nigeria as part of the league’s strategy to expand Spanish football internationally.
“South Africa’s 80 percent of the population is football lovers and when we talk about Africa its over 1 billion people and out of those people 80 percent it’s a sport that they love and since they love it so much La Liga sees a future in Africa and wants to help develop and create better players,” La Liga Africa Office Director Antonio Barradas said.
Africa has contributed immensely to European football, and many Africans have become valuable players in the world. La Liga is keen to find other stars.
“African players have always been successful when playing in the Spanish League, like Kanote was a great player or Abidal in Barcelona FC and there continues to be others,” La Liga President Javier Tebas said. “And now with La Liga’s expansion on the continent many Spanish clubs will hire even more African players and we will have more players, but of course if we want to grow in Africa we have to have more African players in the Spanish League.”
La Liga is hoping to spread their message around the world, reaching as many African fans as possible. But they’re also looking at promoting grassroots football as an educational tool to raise future leaders.
They plan to do this by helping African soccer train underprivileged young talent in township football schools.
It’s still a long way to Bernabeu Stadium, but on a dusty pitch in a Johannesburg township, there might just be a rising star waiting to be discovered.
“Uf we could pick up a Cristino Ronaldo here in Africa, we need a Cristiano here in Africa, there are lots of stars over here I just want to be lucky to pick a couple of them and for them to play in the first division in La Liga in Spain,” Barradas said.