Spain’s Clasico is among the world’s largest sporting events, pitting giants Barcelona and Actual Madrid head-to-head, however the build-up to Sunday’s La Liga conflict has been overshadowed by “Caso Negreira”.
Barca have been charged with corruption by Spanish prosecutors for funds between 2001 and 2018 to the corporate of former refereeing chief Jose Maria Enriquez Negreira, totalling round 7.three million euros ($7.eight million).
The membership say they had been paying for experiences and recommendation on refereeing however prosecutors have accused the membership of searching for to realize beneficial decision-making from officers.
Expenses had been filed final week towards Barcelona, former vice chairman of Spain’s refereeing committee (CTA), Negreira, and two former Barcelona presidents, Sandro Rosell and Josep Maria Bartomeu, amongst others.
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Though La Liga leaders Barcelona can just about clinch the title in the event that they beat second-place Actual Madrid on Sunday to maneuver 12 factors clear, headlines stay dominated by the Negreira case, with tensions rising round Spain.
Within the first spherical of fixtures after Barcelona had been charged final weekend, at varied stadiums, there was a type of protest towards the supposed corruption scandal.
It was clearest within the Basque nation, the place Xavi Hernandez’s facet confronted Athletic Bilbao on Sunday.
Supporters threw mock cash onto the pitch with “mafia” printed on it, together with Barcelona’s membership emblem.
“I used to be shocked on the hostile environment in direction of Barca, it was unhappy to see,” stated Xavi after his crew’s slender 1-Zero win.
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“(Barca) are being judged prematurely, which I don’t suppose is nice for society.”
After Barcelona’s funds to Negreira’s firm had been unearthed in February, the membership responded shortly and denied any wrongdoing.
President Joan Laporta stated the membership had ordered an exterior investigation and would supply solutions as shortly as they may.
Nonetheless, they haven’t scheduled a information convention to reply questions on the problem and their silence has been criticised by La Liga president Javier Tebas.
“Sure (It’s the worst second) that I keep in mind,” Tebas advised Movistar channel Vamos on Tuesday.
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“The issue that we now have is the worst. There are funds recognised by Barcelona to the vice-president of the CTA, that’s one thing irregular.
“It’s comprehensible that rigidity is generated. The status of our soccer is at stake. I’m ashamed. Now we have no clarification from Barcelona.”
– Taking part in the sufferer –
Laporta did communicate at a lunch occasion with the Equestrian Circle in Barcelona and stated there was a “marketing campaign” to wreck Barcelona’s pursuits.
“Let it’s clear Barca have by no means purchased referees and Barca have by no means had the intention of shopping for referees, completely by no means,” stated the president.
Some, together with Tebas, have criticised Laporta and Barcelona for taking part in the sufferer.
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Final Sunday Actual Madrid joined the proceedings towards Barca as an “injured social gathering”, together with the CTA, the Spanish soccer federation, La Liga and Spain’s nationwide sports activities council.
Barcelona won’t host the normal administrators’ lunch with Actual Madrid and their president Florentino Perez forward of the Clasico consequently, based on Spanish experiences.
After a interval of comparatively pleasant relations between the 2 golf equipment — each collaborating on the failed breakaway European Tremendous League plan — it marks a cooling.
Nonetheless, Perez was underneath strain from supporters demanding Madrid take motion towards Barcelona.
Tebas spoke once more on Thursday, saying he didn’t suppose Barcelona had “purchased referees” however he additionally stated that “hiding shouldn’t be the best way” and the membership had to offer full solutions.
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The league’s president reiterated that no sporting punishment will be handed to Barcelona because the alleged infringements occurred too way back.
Laporta took to social media on Friday to attempt to flip consideration in direction of the Clasico, asking for the followers’ assist greater than ever because the membership closes in on their first La Liga title since 2019.
“We’ll defend ourselves and we’ll assault, however now I would like us to focus on cheering the crew on,” stated Laporta.
“We shouldn’t have our consideration diverted by different issues. Let’s assist Barca as a result of we love them.”
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(This story has not been edited by Timesof24 workers and is revealed from a syndicated information company feed)
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