In La Liga, recent champion Valencia has not paid its players this month. The players were touted as "keeping their focus" on playing, despite the financial condition of the club. But eight players were booked and one sent off in yesterday's 1-1 draw with Deportivo, which is not an encouraging sign.
At least they showed up. In England, players from Weymouth in the Blue Square Premier League refused to play on Saturday. And in Uruguay, Villa Espanola's players didn't even get the chance to strike, as the league expelled the club for failing to pay wages to former players. The tournament will go on with the remaining 15 teams, with Villa Espanola relegated to a lower division for next season. These clubs lack the economic scale of Valencia, but the stories provide more evidence that the weak economy is taking its toll on commercial sport.