Spanish officials angry over EU football probe

Spanish officials angry over EU football probe

Published Dec. 19, 2013 12:37 p.m. ET

Spanish sports leaders are angry over a European Union probe targeting Real Madrid, Barcelona and five other clubs for possibly having received illegal state aid.

Miguel Cardenal, head of the Superior Sports Council, says the probe is causing ''grave damage'' to Spanish football's reputation and questioned the motives behind the EU investigation.

Speaking at a breakfast sports meeting Thursday, he said the EU was saying ''that state aid is widespread in Spanish football and this explains the great success our clubs have had, and this is absolutely false.''

Real Madrid president Florentino Perez was equally annoyed and said he believed ''there is a campaign against Spanish football.''