Bob Simon during the filming of his CBS report on Barça / MIGUEL RUIZ-FCB

The CBS journalist died on Wednesday in a car accident in New York at the age of 73. During more than 47 years with the American channel, Bob Simon received more than 40 prestigious awards for his work, including no less than 27 Emmys.

In 2012 Simon came to Barcelona to work on a special report that attempted to explain just how much of the Club’s sporting success was due to its youth football structure. The journalist took particular interest in Leo Messi, a point of reference as a footballer and also of importance personally given the veteran broadcaster’s grandson Jack was also a big fan of the Argentine.

As part of the report, CBS cameras recorded footage of everyday life at La Masia and also recorded interviews with the then president Sandro Rosell, the sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta, as well as players Leo Messi, Xavi Hernández, Cesc Fàbregas and Gerard Piqué, all of whom graduated from the Club’s youth football system.

Worldwide success

The success of the 60 minutes, which is broadcast in more than 100 countries all around the world with a weekly audience of 16 million viewers just in North America, with their first special about Barça, led to the commissioning of a second very similar special in 2013, focussed solely on the sporting aspect under the name of ’60 minutes sports’.

The main focus of this new television report was Leo Messi. The Barça number 10, whom they referred to as the “best player in the world” in the trailer for the programme, was interviewed by Simon for the examination of his career as a whole and of his goalscoring figures for the year of 2012.

Simon enjoyed a long and brilliant career as a journalist. For almost five decades as a reporter he covered conflicts all over the globe in places such as Vietnam, Northern Ireland, and the Middles East. At the time of his death he was busy working on a report with his daughter Tanya about the Ebola virus and the search for a cure.



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