Barcelona presidential candidate launches astonishing attack on club’s board and claims LaLiga giants are in danger of ‘economic bankruptcy and moral decay’ after disastrous spell off the pitch as the battle for power at the Nou Camp rumbles on
- Victor Font posted an open letter to Barcelona members as well as the media
- Club slammed for ‘shameful escalation of chapters in its institutional behaviour’
- Six of Josep Bartomeu’s board resigned on Thursday in protest at club’s running
- Move comes following star man’s Lionel Messi’s ongoing battle with the board
- Learn more about how to help people impacted by COVID
Barcelona have come under an astonishing attack from a presidential candidate looking to take over the club after he claimed the LaLiga giants are heading towards ‘economic bankruptcy and moral decay’.
Victor Font is the leader of the Si al futur group seeking to take control of the Nou Camp boardroom.
Barca have gone from one crisis to another during the coronavirus pandemic and on Thursday hit a new low when six of Josep Bartomeu’s board resigned from their posts.
Barcelona have been criticised for being in ‘danger of economic bankruptcy and moral decay’
Two of the club’s four vice-presidents – Emili Rousaud and Enrique Tombas – as well as directors Silvio Elias, Josep Pont, Jordi Calsamiglia and Maria Texidor have all walked out.
Barca have also been accused of paying money to a social media company that then planted negative stories about club figures at odds with the board, an allegation denied by the club.
But that, along with the controversial sale of Neymar in 2017, were referenced in by Font in an open letter to Barca members and the media.
President Josep Bartomeu has seen six of his board resign in the last week, with them being unhappy at how the club has been run during the coronavirus pandemic
‘For some time now the project Si al futur has been warning Barca members that the club was heading towards the “perfect storm” – it had to replace the best generation of footballers in history, build and finance the Espai Barca development project and compete against corporations with almost unlimited financial resources.
‘And all this had to be done while preserving the ownership of the club in the hands of the members and its competitive capacity both in football and in all sections.
‘If the risks were great, they have now become gigantic. We are in the midst of a pandemic that has brought the planet to a halt and will have effects in all walks of life, also in sport, that today we cannot yet foresee.
‘Likewise, for months we have witnessed a shameful escalation of chapters in the club’s institutional behaviour in which the latest event hides the seriousness of the previous one, a process that culminated in recent days with accusations and serious reproaches among board members, and six abrupt resignations.
Nou Camp presidential candidate Victor Font posted an open letter blasting the club
Lionel Messi and his team-mates have taken a 70 per cent pay cut following a bitter dispute
WHAT IS ERTE?
ERTE is the Spanish government’s furloughing equivalent. It allows companies to temporarily lay off staff or cut hours, while allowing them to claim unemployment benefits.
For the first six months workers are entitled to 70% of their base salary and 50% from the seventh month.
This is calculated from an average of the previous 180 days’ employment and companies can add to the 70% when and if they are able to.
To qualify, a person has to have worked 360 days over the last six years and had their hours reduced by 10-60 per cent.
An ERTE application can be made for a company’s entire workforce or only part of it. The number of those expected to go under an ERTE is at least 760,000.
‘And just as the only priority should be to get the club out of the crisis, the presidency announces a new remodelling of the board of directors in order to stay in power. What is at risk now is Barca as a whole.
‘This is not a recent problem – we have experienced the sentencing of the club in the Neymar case, the disagreements made public between employees and players with executives and managers, and the audit of the case on social networks, which seems will confirm the scandal.
‘Let’s add an erratic sports policy, the breaking up of the board of directors and the significant reduction in income due to the pandemic, and the result is the danger of economic bankruptcy and moral decay in which the club has settled. Game over.’
Barca have been in a civil war for many weeks now, with star player Lionel Messi having been in a bitter dispute with Bartomeu and his board over he and his team-mates taking a paycut.
The battle came shortly after Messi’s feud with director of football Eric Abidal over the players’ role in the sacking of former manager Ernesto Valverde in January.
Even with Messi and his team-mates taking a 70 per cent pay cut, the club has also said it will not cover non-playing staff wages and has put them on ERTE – the Spanish government’s equivalent of furloughing – despite Bartomeu saying the club would earn £878million this season.
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