As announced by L’Equipe, the Professional Football League would like to relocate the match of the 23rd day of Ligue 1 between Monaco and OL to China. FIFA still needs to be convinced.
As reported this Thursday by the daily The team, the Professional Football League wants to relocate the Monaco-Lyon match to China, counting for the 23rd day of Ligue 1 and scheduled for the weekend of February 6. The idea dates back several months already and was at the heart of discussions between Jean-Michel Aulas, president of OL, Oleg Petrov, vice-president of ASM, and Vincent Labrune, president of the LFP.
Lyon and Monaco having Chinese partners, the idea of a germ of organizing a match in China to occasionally expose Ligue 1 in a territory to be conquered in order to eventually increase international rights. But for this project to succeed, it requires the approval of FIFA which, in general, prohibits the holding of championship matches outside the territory of the country concerned.
Upcoming discussions between the LFP and FIFA
In 2010, Evian Thonon Gaillard, for example, asked to play his domestic matches in Geneva for reasons of geographical proximity and economic basin. A request refused at the time by UEFA. Discussions will therefore begin between the LFP and FIFA to try to convince the international body.
The leaders of English football will argue that it is only a match, therefore a one-off operation, that the period does not pose a problem with the calendar, that the two clubs agree and that it is important for the French foot to be able to develop internationally. It remains to be seen whether FIFA will be sensitive to these arguments.