FC Barcelona President Sandro Rosell was interviewed this Friday by the veteran presenter Luis del Olmo for the Spanish radio station ABC Punto and dealt with a wide range of issues affecting the Club. Sr Rosell referred to the team’s record breaking first half to this season which sees them way out in front at the top of La Liga: “the first half of the league was historic. The work put in by Tito Villanova and the team is excellent”.
Bayern friendly game
The news that Barça will be facing Bayern Munich in a friendly this July came after Sr Rosell met with the German team’s vice-president Karl-Heinz Rummenigge in the ECA General Assembley held in Doha this week. The game had been more or less sorted a few months ago, but Sr Rosell explained that the Qatar meeting had served to finalise details: “we put the finishing touches to the arrangements in Qatar, but the game has been on the cards for about six months now – well before we knew that Guardiola was going to coach there”. The President was asked whether the Club had missed Pep and replied that a coach of his stature was bound to be missed, but: “life goes on”.
Cup semi against Madrid
The Camp Nou will be the scene of the Spanish Cup semi-final second leg later this month and the President, who admitted Madrid have players who can cause plenty of problems for Barça, is really looking forward to the game: “it’s a great match to be involved in as a fan and especially as a Barça fan. As President, I’ll have to show restraint and responsibility of course”.
The announcement of Europol’s investigation into match fixing this week, which involves games in more than 15 countries around the world was also touched on in the interview, with Sr Rosell explaining: “the best news is that Spanish football isn’t involved at all in the investigation. It’s a horrible thing and we are naturally completely against it. I heard the news when I was at the ECA meeting and we made a statement. We have to fight against this kind of thing and if any club is involved, they will be thrown out”.
There were also claims last week in “France Football” that votes had been bought and sold in the process of electing Qatar as the hosts of the 2022 World Cup and Sr Rosell was adamant: “it’s a pity such unfounded articles are published. I think that there is a war between UEFA and FIFA and that is behind this story”.