La Liga, the best league in world football, is back to excite football fans all over the world. With two weeks already in the season, the global stars of world football, high-profile new faces and three freshly-promoted sides have returned to stadiums across Spain and television screens all around the world better equipped than ever to give fans the most thrilling experience possible.
In addition, this season will also bring us two new firsts: a whole new sound identity for LaLiga, composed by Emmy Award-winning composer Lucas Vidal; and a new cutting-edge match ball designed by PUMA for both LaLiga Santander and LaLiga SmartBank, the rebranded second tier.
As with each new season, LaLiga welcomed three new teams into the fold for the 2019/20 campaign in the shape of CA Osasuna, Granada CF and RCD Mallorca. Osasuna return to the topflight following a two-year absence after being crowned LaLiga SmartBank champions in 2018/19.
An academy-driven club steeped in tradition – with centenary celebrations on the horizon for 2020 – the side from Pamplona are a welcome addition for what will be their 38th season in the top division. Granada CF, with a proud reputation as one of LaLiga’s true ‘giant killer’ clubs, likewise return after a two-year absence, together with their fans, known to be among Spanish football’s most passionate. Last but not least are RCD Mallorca, who embark on their eighth stint in LaLiga Santander. Owned by a forward-thinking consortium including the likes of former NBA MVP Steve Nash, Mallorca will fly the flag for the Balearic Islands as the only side based outside the Iberian Peninsula in the division in 2019/20.
It’s not just new teams that will be gracing LaLiga Santander this season; we’ll also have a host of exciting new signings to join the likes of Lionel Messi, Sergio Ramos and Koke. Stars of the global game have queued up to join Spanish football among them Eden Hazard and Frenkie de Jong, two of the most blockbuster summer signings in world football, who have joined Real Madrid and FC Barcelona respectively.
Over at Atletico de Madrid, Joao Felix became the second-most expensive teenager in football history by joining Diego Simeone’s side while Real Betis beat off competition from Europe’s top sides to secure the signing of French World Cup winner Nabil Fekir. Notable names heading to pastures new within LaLiga include Uruguayan striker Maxi Gomez, who has joined Valencia CF from RC Celta. The transfer window closes on September 2nd, giving LaLiga Santander clubs plenty of time to add even more quality to their ranks ahead of the new season.
With the first of 380 nail-biting encounters set played between Athletic Club and Barcelona at San Mames on August 16th, the big games come thick and fast soon after.
The historic Basque and Madrid derbies will be played in September, before El Clasico – the most watched club game in world football – returns in late-October. The historic and always entertaining Seville, Valencia and Barcelona derbies follow in November, December and January, respectively.
LaLiga will continue to offer leading television broadcast technology to millions of fans across the world this season. State-of-the-art aerial cameras are now operative at 11 different LaLiga stadiums, with Getafe, Eibar and Real Sociedad the latest clubs to adopt the technology, while eight stadiums offer 360° replays. 4K cinematic production is now a permanent feature of LaLiga Santander broadcasts, which last season reached an audience of over 2.7 billion fans around the world. This season will also see the return of VAR (Video Assisted Referee) following a highly successful first season in which the ‘correct decision rate’ in disputed incidents rose from 91.5% to 96.92%.
Both LaLiga Santander and LaLiga SmartBank will feature a new match ball designed by PUMA this season while the competition will also debut an all-new soundtrack written by Emmy Award-winner and Hollywood film composer Lucas Vidal. The composition features the real-life heartbeats of 90 unborn children – the future fans of LaLiga – and will be used in all LaLiga TV broadcasts across the world.
Santander returns as the competition’s title sponsor, while sports-scoring app Livescore, PUMA and Budweiser join EA Sports, Rexona and Clear Men as global sponsors ahead of the 2019/20 season. Regional sponsors in Nigeria include SportPesa, GB Foods and Big Cola.
Nigerian player, Chidozie Awaziem who was recently signed by CD Leganes will join the likes of Azeez Ramon of Granada FC, Kenneth Omeruo of CD Leganes and Samuel Chwukwueze of Villareal to represent Nigeria in the Spanish league.
“We are happy to bring to our Nigerian fans another season of exciting football experience," Guillermo Perez Castello said.
"This season, LaLiga plans to reinforce its commitment to the Nigerian market through partnerships such as the LaLiga - NPFL coaching seminar for Nigerian youth coaches, the LaLiga - NPFL U-15 tournament, the MoU signing with the NWFL to bolster women’s sports, the partnership with HiFL and LaLiga’s partnership with Lagos Business School to provide sports business management programmes”.