Lega Serie A in Saudi talks over Supercoppa Italiana

Lega Serie A, the governing body of the top division of Italian club football, has confirmed it has received an “important offer” to take its Supercoppa Italiana competition to Saudi Arabia.

The confirmation comes after Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport said that a three-year deal had been struck that would commence with the 2018-19 season.

Gazzetta said the deal would be worth around €20m ($24m) to the Lega, with competing clubs to receive around €3m each. The Supercoppa is the annual match between the reigning champion of Serie A and the winner of the Coppa Italia knockout competition.

Although the game was played in Rome’s Stadio Olimpico last season it has been staged in a variety of different markets in recent years. The Qatari capital of Doha played host in 2016 and 2014, while the Chinese cities of Beijing (2009, 2011 and 2012) and Shanghai (2015) also staged recent editions.

New York and Washington D.C. staged the match in 2003 and 1993, respectively, while the 2002 game was played in Tripoli, Libya.

A Saudi agreement will further the nation’s rapid expansion into the sports market as it seeks to diversify its interests away from the oil sector.

Lega Serie A president Gaetano Miccichè said: “To increase the interest in Italian football there is an important offer from Saudi Arabia to host the next Supercoppa. The more the horizon of passions and new markets is widened, the more it is an advantage for us.”