Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde, has kicked against the move by La Liga to postpone the October 26 El Clasico between his team and Real Madrid.
On Tuesday, La Liga appealed to the Spanish Football Federation (SFF) to reschedule the date due to ongoing protests in Catalonia over the jailing of nine Catalan separatist leaders.
However, Valverde considered such a move as unpleasant and urged the SFF to allow the game to go on as planned.
“There’s been a lot spoken about this game. There was indeed a proposal to change the fixtures round, but we weren’t in favour of that because we play (away) the Wednesday before,” Valverde told a news conference on Thursday.
“We have nine days to go until the game. We need to respect the calendar and also the fans.
“Under normal circumstances, we’d play at home. They’re anticipating certain different circumstances and while we know that this week has been out of the ordinary, we are hopeful of playing the game at our ground. That’s what we want to do.”
“It’s a chance for people in society, as well as our fans to demonstrate a number of things. We respect the opposite – in this case, our opponent – and that by being civil the match can be played,” Valverde said.
“We want to get rid of all the doom-mongers who say the game won’t go ahead. We can show that the match can be played as normal and forget about them.”