Atletico Madrid’s LaLiga clash with Athletic Bilbao was called off on Saturday after a snowstorm caused severe disruption in Spain.
Storm Filomena blanketed parts of the country in heavy snow, as Madrid – one of the worst affected areas – could see up to an exceptional eight inches of snow throughout the day.
The Athletic Bilbao squad boarded a private plane on Friday night ahead of the league encounter at the Stadio Wanda Metropolitano on Saturday, but as they approached the Spanish capital they were refused permission to land at Barajas airport and were diverted back to their origin.
A LaLiga statement read: “Given the exceptional situation caused by the storm across a large part of the Iberian peninsula, causing the closure of Madrid Barajas airport throughout the day, and the impossibility of having the pitch in optimal playing conditions, LaLiga, after contacting both clubs, have asked the Professional Competition Committee first thing this morning to postpone the match between Club Atletico de Madrid – Athletic Club initially scheduled for Saturday (16:15 CET) at the Wanda Metropolitano.”
Real Madrid players and staff were also affected by the adverse weather on their journey to Pamplona on Friday as they get set to face Osasuna on Saturday.
At one stage it appeared the flight would not be able to take off and the Real travelling party was made to wait for almost four hours before being given permission to leave Barajas airport, which was closed on Saturday.
However, Zinedine Zidane’s men were able to take part in a training session in the snow which included a snowball fight.
Real’s players appeared in a cheery mood after their session. Atletico were unable to train.
Madrid’s third club side, Rayo Vallecano, were forced to abandon their journey to Miranda de Ebro for their Segunda Division clash against Mirandes.
? Hola @CDMirandes vamos para allá. Por nosotros no va a ser pero esto está complicado ??????
Que lleguéis sanos todos los que tenéis que estar hoy en las carreteras. pic.twitter.com/7vPpcOjAcw
— Rayo Vallecano (@RayoVallecano) January 8, 2021
Their club bus was forced to stop as roads were closed on Friday evening, but a viral clip shows their players helping to free cars that had been stuck in the snow on the motorway.