Barcelona currently occupies the top spot in the Spanish League, surpassing their long-standing rivals Real Madrid. However, the past few years have been challenging for the Catalan team due to financial difficulties. The previous board, under the leadership of ex-president Josep Maria Bartomeu, was removed from power due to poor financial management.
Bartomeu’s lavish spending approach resulted in the club accumulating a debt of approximately $1 billion. Former Barcelona president, Joan Laporta, returned to his previous role and secured investments, and restructured their debt. This not only relieved their financial burden but also enabled them to make substantial investments during the summer.
However, the club has been rocked by allegations of corruptionas Barcelona and the ex-president have been charged with corruption as they reportedly sent money to referees from 2001 to 2018. Laporta has denied any wrongdoings and has promised to fight back at one point stating, “Barça never bought referees and never intended to buy any, let that be clear.”
What are the details of the Barcelona Corruption case and what does Joan Laporta have to say?
According to the charge sheet, around £7.4m was transferred to a company belonging to Jose Maria Enriquez Negreira, a former vice president of the Spanish refereeing committee. The accusation involves the club, as well as former officials and Negreira himself.
Apart from Bartomeu, Sandro Rosell, another former president who headed the club from 2010 to 2014, has also been implicated in the charges. Additionally, members of Bartomeu’s team, Oscar Grau and Albert Soler have been accused. This has come as a shock to the club, its supporters, and the wider football community.
Bartomeu may be long gone but his effects on the club live on. Bartomeu’s poor financial management led to Messi’s departure as the club was unable to renew its contract due to his strict La Liga spending rules. Even though Laporta was president when Messi left, it is thought to be Bartomeu’s recklessness that left Laporta helpless. Laporta also blames Javier Tebas, the La Liga president.
Barcelona’s season was marred by disappointing performances in both the Champions League and Europa League. They were unable to progress beyond the group stage of the Champions League and suffered a two-leg defeat to Manchester United in the Europa League.
Despite their struggles in European competition, Barcelona is currently leading the Spanish La Liga standings with an eight-point lead over their arch-rivals, Real Madrid. They are hoping to reclaim the Spanish title from ‘Los Blanco”s grasp in Xavi’s first full season as Barcelona manager.
Do you have faith in the words of Laporta? What do you think will happen to those charged? What will happen to Barcelona? Leave your thoughts down below.