The season resumes in La Liga on Wednesday in bizarre circumstances with the second half of a Segunda Division match between Rayo Vallecano and Albacete that was abandoned in December due to offensive chanting, and then the COVID-19 pandemic forced a three-month suspension.
The starting gun will be properly fired with Thursday's derby between Sevilla and Real Betis, while champions Barcelona play their first game on Saturday away to Real Mallorca, with title rivals Real Madrid hosting Eibar on Sunday.
All matches will be played without spectators for safety reasons, although broadcasters plan to replicate crowd noise for television viewers, which will include a minute of applause for Spain's more-than 27,000 COVID-19 victims.
While clubs such as Eibar and Racing Santander expressed their disquiet about returning and a Cadiz player at first refused to turn up for training, Spain has been largely united by a desire for football to return to lift the mood in one of the worst-affected countries in the world by the virus.
La Liga President Javier Tebas has led the campaign to get the season back on track, warning early on that not completing the campaign could lead to a collective loss of 1 billion euros ($1.13 billion) in forfeited broadcast revenues and prize money.
Old wounds between Tebas and federation President Luis Rubiales resurfaced in the early stages of negotiations. But after an eight-hour meeting organized by Junior Sports Minister Irene Lozano in April, they finally pledged to work together to ensure the season was completed.
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