Board member Jordi Moix, vice-president Carles Vilarrubí, the President of the Universitat Marie-Christine Lemardeley and the Director of the Àrea de Llengua i Universitats of the IRL Andreu Bosch / PHOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ - FCB

Barça and the Catalan culture were in the spotlight a few hours before kick off in Paris this morning, when the Universitat de París III-Sorbona Nova hosted a talk by the Club vice-president Carles Vilarrubí entitled “Barça, sport, culture and education”. The event is part of the day to celebrate Catalan culture organised by the Institut Ramon Llull and the Paris University. Board memberJordi Moix also attended the event.
Sr Vilarrubí explained the historic roots of the Club in Catalonian society and that the Club had always been a vehicle for the recovery of Catalan identity and an instrument for the integration of newcomers from all parts of the world. Vilarrubí also explained the key reasons why Barça has become a reference in the world and is considered “more than a club”, the way Barça’s roots in the Catalan society is exhibited in all cultural areas, how the Club had developed a unique academy system and the manner in which Barça had made the defence of its values one of its defining traits.

Praise for Abidal

Vilarrubí also had some special words for Éric Abidal. “Our first team is built around home grown players, but we also have players from outside who complement them and help us achieve as high a level as possible. That’s what Eric Abidal does for us – he’s a player who has won a place in the heart of all Barça fans. He is an example of overcoming difficulties and a player who is completely integrated in our Club and has become a reference point for the Club’s values. The image of Abidal collecting the Champions League trophy when we won at Wembley was a great gesture from our captain Carles Puyol, which will stay with us for ever”.

"Abidal is an example of overcoming difficulties and a player who is completely integrated in our Club and has become a reference point for the Club’s values"

The event was part of the day’s celebration of Catalan culture which ended with a concert by Anna Roig and l’Ombre de Ton Chien, as part of the agreement signed between  the Institut Ramon Llull and the Club to promote Catalan culture globally. The event was presented by the president of the University, Marie-Christine Lemardeley and was also attended by the delegate of the Generalitat de Catalunya in France, Maryse Olivé,  the Director of  the Àrea de Llengua i Universitats of the IRL, Andreu Bosch, its delegate in Paris, Raül David Martínez, and the academic head of Catalan Studies atteh University, Eric Beaumatin.

A reflection of Catalan society

Answering questions from the public, Vilarrubí was asked about the Club’s position in relation to the current political situation in Catalonia and he explained:“Barça are part of the Catalan social reality, but we cannot be protagonists of a political process, it’s the institutions and the political parties who have to do that. What you see at the Camp Nou is a reflection of Catalan society , but as an institution we cannot be a political instrument”.

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