Serie A to stage Supercoppa on home soil after successive Saudi editions
The next Supercoppa, the annual clash between the winners of Italian soccer's Serie A and Coppa Italia, will be played in Italy following two successive controversial editions in Saudi Arabia, the league has announced.
Juventus and Napoli will contest the Supercoppa at the Mapei Stadium in Reggio Emilia, with 20 January the most likely date.
It was selected ahead of the Olympic Stadium in Rome, because of the likelihood of no fans being in attendance.
Serie A has a €21-million ($25-million) deal with the ministry of sports in Saudi Arabia to stage three editions of the contest in the country over a five-year period. The first game was played in Jeddah in 2019, followed by Riyadh early this year.
As well as the human rights issues, Serie A had come under pressure to move the game out of Saudi Arabia from BeIN Sports, the Qatar-based pay-TV broadcaster, because of Saudi Arabia’s harbouring of beoutQ, the pirate broadcaster of a range of sports properties, including Italy's top flight.
Before the first Supercoppa in January 2019, BeIN chief executive Yousef Al-Obaidly wrote to the league on several occasions in a bid to block the game taking place in the “piracy-supporting” nation.
However, the league returned again 12 months later and in June this year, BeIN renegotiated its 35-territory contract with Serie A for the 2020-21 season to reflect "how BeIN was sold exclusive rights but which have been non-exclusive due to piracy."