Inside Spain is a weekly instalment brought to you by Football España, providing an insight into all of the major stories coming out of the rich and intense climes of La Liga and beyond.
Another week, another dramatic case of Barcelona v La Liga. The President of La Liga Javier Tebas is a famously stubborn character and has been doing everything he can to impede Gavi being registered as a first-team Barcelona player. To the point where Barcelona have taken the matter to court.
The judge there gave Barcelona permission to register Gavi temporarily, until he can make a full ruling. Problem being, if he rules in favour of La Liga, Gavi will be available in the summer. Tebas has vowed to fight on.
Hector Bellerin left for Sporting CP and his replacement arrived 18 seconds late according to FIFA, meaning Julian Araujo could not be registered. However on the pitch, Barcelona are not that impressive, but they are now eight points clear of Real Madrid. Aside from the fact that Ousmane Dembele is injured and may well miss their first leg against Manchester United, it’s going quite well for Xavi Hernandez.
Albeit Los Blancos have a game in hand against a hapless Valencia. After just one win in eleven games, Gennaro Gattuso quite Los Che, leaving them just a point above the relegation zone and mired in trouble.
Los Blancos will expect themselves to win that one, but remain hit and miss as their tie against Liverpool approaches. Ferland Mendy is likely to miss that match, but they should have Aurelien Tchouameni, David Alaba and Dani Carvajal back. They did not recruit anyone in January, but it has been confirmed that Fran Garcia will join them at the end of the season from Rayo Vallecano.
Pathe Ciss did not get to leave Rayo for Lyon on deadline day, supposedly leading to him being locked in a room by security to stop him assaulting President Raul Martin Presa – that was after he threw a stapler at him. When he did leave the building, he did not hold back.
There has been plenty of conversation around the Premier League spending, with the €800m plus spree dwarfing the €34m spend in La Liga. The lonely arrival at the big three on deadline day was Matt Doherty to Atletico Madrid on a free. Sevilla Sporting Director Monchi has come under fire of late, but it has been noted how impressive it is that he sold Bryan Gil to Tottenham for €25m and Erik Lamela, and now has both players and the €25m at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan.
Finally, the lamentable Dani Alves case rumbles on. Amid rumours of a pending divorce and a potential lawsuit that will cost him €4.5m, the most curious story related to the matter is his cell-mate, who goes by the name of ‘Coutinho’ and has an interesting past.