Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone showed empathy for his colleague Quique Sanchez Flores after his side beat the latter’s Sevilla on Saturday afternoon, making it clear that he did not feel La Liga’s coverage was sensitive enough. The increased broadcasting reach has become a controversial during the season, with several key figures also expressing their opposition.
Last season there was mircrophones used during cooling breaks to listen to what managers were saying, and this year dressing room cameras are now being used too. The likes of Javier Aguirre and Unai Simon have declared that it violates the sanctity of the dressing room, but clubs are given financially rewards based on how much access they give the cameras, and it could be worth an extra few million.
Real Madrid have completely vetoed that access, and have been engaged in court battles for months over it. They refuse access to the dressing room and have stopped putting players up for flash interviews.
Another fresh feature has been having both managers on to discuss the match after the game. As reported by Relevo, Simeone said he was not comfortable with this on DAZN after their 1-0 win.
“I want to make a comment. This is very nice, but today it was my turn to win. When you have to lose, it’s not so good. This situation of putting two coaches face to face, beyond the good relationship we may have, now that’s not so good. It matters a lot to those who make it [the product]but for us it is not so good.”
Sanchez Flores backed Simeone up too.
“I agree with Diego. This situation is very uncomfortable, but we accept it. It’s fine. We are moving forward,” said the newly appointed Sevilla coach.
It feels as if the issue is unlikely to go away any time soon. Given the micro-analysis that players and managers are subjected too, it is understandable that managers and players would feel more vulnerable with more access. Equally, La Liga are competing in a tough market, and there is no doubt that for the casual viewer, it improves the product. Looking across to the USA, which is where most of football appears to be getting its ideas for improvement, that increased access is a big part of it.