MADRID, Nov. 18 (Xinhua) -- Spain's women's football league (Liga Iberdrola) saw the first strike in its history at the weekend, as all scheduled games were canceled because of a dispute over working conditions.
Spain's female players are asking for a minimum wage of 75 percent of the minimum national wage of 16,000 euros a year (17,700 US dollars), while Spain's clubs are offering just 50 percent of the minimum wage.
The strike was called after 21 meetings to find an agreement failed to do so and although this Monday will see the case go to arbitration aimed at finding an agreement between clubs and players, an agreement looks to be a long way away.
The Liga Iberdrola has grown in importance in recent years, with leading clubs such FC Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Athletic Bilbao, Real Betis, Valencia and Sevilla all running women's teams, while this summer saw Real Madrid also enter the Liga Iberdrola by buying out recently-promoted Tacon, who are currently second from bottom of the 16-team league.
Although attendances are relatively modest, Athletic Bilbao and Atletico Madrid's women's sides have shown they can attract crowds of over 40,000 for big games, and over 20,000 fans watched the recent Basque derby between Athletic and Real Sociedad, while several Liga Iberdrola matches are televised live every weekend.