Two weeks ago, the Royal Spanish Swimming Federation (RFEN) announced that the water polo season won’t be continued, but didn’t decide if the leagues will be canceled or the champions would be declared.
As things stand now, Barceloneta (men) and Mataro (women) will be proclaimed as the national champions for the season 2019/20.
That was agreed in a teleconference meeting between RFEN and the representatives of all clubs that compete in the national leagues (Liga Premaat). RFEN and the clubs agreed to validate the current classifications (the leagues were suspended on March 13th). But, this decision must be approved by the Delegate Commission of the Federation.
The current standings in the Spanish Championships
Men: 1, Barceloneta 38 pts (14 games), 2. Barcelona 34 (14), 3, Terrassa 34 (15), 4, Sabadell 30 (14), 5, Mataro 26 (15), 6, Mediterrani 23 (15), 7. Sant Andreu 16 (15), 8. Catalunya 12 (15), 9. Real Canoe 12 (14), 10. Navarra 8 (14), 11. Tenerife 1 (15).
Women: 1. Mataro 36 , 2. Mediterrani 33, 3. Sabadell 30, 4. Sant Andreu 25, 5. Terrassa 24, 6. Boadilla 16, 7. Rubi 12, 8. Sant Feliu 11, 9. Catalunya 4, 10. Escuela Zaragoza 1 (all teams played 13 matches).
“In a teleconference meeting, held this Thursday afternoon between RFEN and all the participating clubs in the 2019-20 PREMAAT leagues of Spanish water polo, it has been expressed mostly to validate the current classifications – in the absence of their approval, if appropriate, by part of the Delegate Commission at the time it was decided to end them weeks ago after being paralyzed on March 13 due to the State of Emergency decreed by the Government due to the serious coronavirus crisis. Zodiac CN Atletic-Barceloneta male team and CN Mataro female team then dominated the respective classifications of Spanish water polo”, RFEN announced.
According to this agreement, none of the clubs would be relegated to the lower league, but there would be promotions from lower to higher leagues.
These proposals will be forwarded to the Delegate Commission for approval.
Felipe Perrone, Barceloneta’s main star, said that some decisions had had to be made.
-I don’t feel like a champion. We didn’t play all the matches, there were no playoffs, but a decision had to be made. The most important thing is that we should start to train again next week, for the first time after two months without entering the pool. This makes us happy-Perrone said for Total Waterpolo.
But the clubs aren’t unanimous regarding these proposals.
Sabadell doesn’t agree with the decision, because it considers that playoffs should be played to decide winners. Sabadell is aware of the current situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and it was in favor of declaring the season null, without winners or losers.
Spanish newspaper “Diari de Sabadell” published that Sabadell’s president Claudi Marti had been very surprised by RFEN’s proposal.
“We do not understand that RFEN is proposing champions according to the classification of the regular phase that is not even over”. In the same vein, he gave the example of men’s competition, where not even the teams had played the same matches. Finally, he commented that “it is a competition based on the playoffs, so the champion should be decided in the playoffs.”
From now on, the club chaired by Claudi Martí will study all the scenarios and it is not ruled out that in the coming days it will decide to take legal action against the Spanish Swimming Federation, “Diari de Sabadell” published on its website.