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Laporta lashes out at Barcelona board

Former Barcelona chief Joan Laporta has accused the La Liga club’s hierarchy of having links to violent fan groups.

Laporta aired his views on radio program Punto Pelota on Thursday.

The 50-year-old targeted president Sandro Rosell claiming the board have connections to football hooligans, and want those fans to return to Camp Nou.

He said: “There is evidence that these gentlemen have links to those violent groups that are lurking, hidden, and ready to return to their evil ways.”

In a pointed attack, the Spanish politician went on to say Guardiola was forced out of the club and Tito Villanova’s appointment was a panic measure.

“The decision to appoint Tito Vilanova was one of fear and panic. Guardiola left because of a dereliction of duty on the part of the board as the president was hiding because he was only concerned with making a disgusting persecution of the previous directive.

“They (the board) are devoted to lying and said that Barca would not exist without Qatar (the Foundation). It’s all lies.”

Laporta said he is still a fan favourite with the Barcelona supporters, claiming they are asking him to run in the next presidential elections.

“At the moment I’m in a period of reflection. If I’m thinking of returning then it is because the people ask me to.”

Laporta also praised superstar Lionel Messi for his off-field leadership, revealing the Argentine had a big hand in recruiting Gerard Pique back to Camp Nou.

“Messi has a special way about him where he exercises leadership. He never imposes on anybody and the only thing I can remember is a comment about Pique when we told him we were going to get rid of Ronaldinho,” he said.

“‘Bring Pique, bring Pique. He really looked after me when we were in the youth team’, he (Messi) told me.”

Fri 12 October, 2012
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