Barcelona president Joan Laporta has hit out at rivals Real Madrid for their ‘cynical’ response to the controversy surrounding the Negreira case.
Laporta held a lengthy press conference on Monday in which he launched a strong defence of the club’s payments to former referee chief Jose Maria Enriquez Negreira, insisting the criticism was part of a ‘smear campaign’ against Barcelona.
Among those to catch stray bullets from Laporta were La Liga president Javier Tebas and the entire organisation of UEFA, but the Barcelona president also went out of his way to question Real Madrid’s response to the matter.
“I would like to make a reference to a club that says it feels wronged, which is Real Madrid,” Laporta began. “We all know they have been favoured historically and currently, for whatever reasons.
“For several decades, the presidents of the CTA (referee committee) were ex-partners of Real Madrid, ex-players or ex-directors of Real Madrid. For 70 years, those who have designated who had to deliver justice have been, as I said, ex-partners, ex-players, ex-managers and, on some occasions, everything at the same time.
“That this club considers that it feels harmed in the best period in the history of Barcelona seems to me to be an unprecedented exercise in cynicism. I hope that they an be unmaked at trial, because it is an unprecedented exercise in cynicism.
“It seems to me an exercise in cynicism that Madrid appears in the case alleging that they felt harmed in a sporting sense in the most successful period of Barca. Barca is not conceived as a uniting entity of values. We will act in defence of the integrity of Barcelona.”
Then turning his attention to Tebas, Laporta urged La Liga’s president to end his ‘verbal incontinence’.
“We are witnessing a Solomonic trial in which there are people tho try to harm those of us who have not bowed to their requests and wishes,” the Barcelona chief continued. “This is intolerable.
“I want to point out, specifically, the president of La Liga. With his constant manifestations, he has fuelled the controversy and has provided false documentation to the Prosecutor’s Office. I ask him to stop his verbal incontinence because he is not doing the institution he represents any favours.
“He is validating information that is false, he has even said there was no report. The president of the Spanish Football Federation [Luis Rubiales], for example, has not joined this lynching. I appreciate his positioning.”