Liga - Exodus of Spain players bad for La Liga - Pique

The exodus of top Spanish players from cash-strapped La Liga is a good thing for the national team but bad for the domestic league, according to Barcelona and Spain defender Gerard Pique.

Liga - Exodus of Spain players bad for La Liga - Pique

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Gerard Pique, Barcelona (Reuters)

Jesus Navas became the latest international to move abroad when he left Sevilla to join Spain team mate David Silva at Manchester City this month.

Nine members of the Spain squad contesting the Confederations Cup in Brazil now play outside their home country.

Heavyweights Real Madrid and Barcelona, the world's richest clubs by revenue, can afford the best players and dominate La Liga as a result. They have 13 Spanish internationals between them.

However, financially troubled clubs in the second rank like Atletico Madrid, Valencia and Sevilla have been forced to cash in on their prize assets, who are increasingly seeking a new challenge and better wages away from Spain.

"On the one hand it's good for the national team but on the other it's a little bit bad for La Liga because players are leaving who are from your country," Pique said in an interview with As sports daily published on Sunday.

"For the player it's very positive going abroad because you develop a great deal as a person, you get to know another place, another culture," added the 26-year-old, who spent three seasons at Manchester United before returning to his boyhood club.

"And if it's in England, where almost all the players are going, the football is amazing, the atmosphere, the stadiums.

"There is a lot of respect for the players and it's also a very, very competitive league."

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