At lunchtime on Tuesday the ‘Penya Diplomàcia Blaugrana’ (Barça Diplomatic Supporters’ Group) enjoyed its presentation in Barcelona. The group was founded in February of this year and brings together members of the diplomatic core and politicians from all over the world who share a love of Barça. The supporters’ club president is José Maria Coso, Head of Protocol at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Spanish Cooperation and its headquarters can be found in calle Botoneras in Madrid, right next to the city’s main square.
The event in Barcelona took place at the El Palauet Hotel and was led by the FC Barcelona president, Josep Maria Bartomeu. Also present from the club were vice presidents Jordi Cardoner, Carles Villarubí and the board member responsible for Supporters’ groups, Pau Vilanova. In attendance were six ambassadors who had all made the trip from Madrid; the Bolivian ambassador, María Carmen Almendras Camargo, attended as a founding member of the group as well as other ambassadors who countries have had or still have links with the club via foreign players at Barça. That is the case for the Brazilian ambassador, Paulo Cesa de Oliveira Campos; the ambassador from Argentina, Carlos Antonio Bettini; the Uruguayan ambassador Francisco C.Bustillo Bonasso and the Chilean representative, Javier Marambio Vial. Also there was the Hungarian ambassador Eniko Gyori, whose nation produced such Barça legends as Ladislao Kubala and Sandor Kocsis.
The Diplomatic Supporters’ Group was created under the initiative of Rodríguez Coso, a well known Barça fan who had set up a similar club in Lisbon during his time at the embassy in Portugal. The idea was supported by Barça director Pau Vilanova under the umbrella of the XXI Century project which aims to promote the Supporters’ Clubs as a brand.