Asked about the position of Barcelona sports director Txiki Begiristain, Barcelona institutional vice-president Albert Perrín has said in an interview with Catalan radio station Catalunya Ràdio that the former Barcelona player will probably leave the club after next year's elections:
"I think that Txiki will not continue. It has nothing to do with the outcome of the elections and who will be the next president. It is a personal choice. I think he has made a decision and that he will not stay on."
Minguella: This is a message for the future pre-candidates for president of Barça. Minguella is available to give a touch a touch of class and elegance to your candidacy. Take advantage of the discounts, because when the campaign officially takes off, my fee will triple. Come on Madam, it's still fresh!
Catalan sports paper Sport claims that the figure of Barcelona chief executive Joan Oliver (picture) is at this moment the main obstacle for one united board candidacy in next year's elections for president of Barcelona (read more here).
Key directors Alfons Godall and Jaume Ferrer would have a different opinion on the continuation of the general director after the elections. While Godall reportedly wants to keep Oliver in charge, Ferrer would want him to leave the club after Oliver ordered a detective agency to investigate Ferrer and three other vice-presidents earlier this year (read more here).
read this blog's ten-parts series on the "barcagate" affair here
Asked about the rumours that he will take part in next year's elections for president of FC Barcelona (read more here), Catalan university professor Jaume Guixà has confirmed last month in an interview with Catalan local television channel TV Sant Cugat that he will be a candidate:
"In fact, since 2006, when we weren't able to collect the signatures needed [read more here], we have continued to work and form a team thinking about the elections that will be held next year. So it's not that I'm announcing it now, I have said it every time I had the chance or was asked about it: yes, I plan to run in the elections of 2010."
One of the people rumoured to be a possible candidate in next year's elections for president of FC Barcelona is Josep Maria Minguella, a former 68-year-old player's agent who represented, among many others, Barcelona players like Maradona, Romario, Guardiola, Stoichkov, Rivaldo and Messi.
Minguella, who now mainly acts as a Barcelona pundit for a number of radio and television shows, took part in the 2003 elections, when he ended fifth (out of six contenders) with 1.867 votes (3,62%). The Catalan is a fierce critic of current Barcelona president Joan Laporta and supported last year's vote of no confidence against the board.
Although Catalan sports paper Sport claimed in April of this year that Minguella had back then already decided to take part in the upcoming elections, the former candidate didn't yet confirm that he will run.
Speaking to Catalan radio station RAC 1 last week, Minguella said that he will make a decision at the beginning of next year: "I would be delighted to take part, but I didn't decide anything yet. It will depend on personal issues. I will make a decision in January."
Catalan sports paper El 9 Esportiu claims that Minguella has been holding talks with a few other possible pre-candidates - as could be Jaume Llauradó, Jordi Majó or Jordi Medina – to sound them out on a possible joint candidacy.
Minguella has said several times over the past weeks that talks with other people are indeed ongoing and it has been confirmed to this blog that a partnership with Jordi Majó, who finished third in the 2003 elections, seems at this moment the most likely option.
Since Joan Laporta became president of FC Barcelona, the composition of the board of directors has been changing permanently. An overview.
2003 On 22 June 2003, one week after the elections, a new Barcelona board takes office. President Joan Laporta leads a group of 15 directors that include 5 vice-presidents (Albert Vicens, Sandro Rosell, Ferran Soriano, Alfons Godall and Marc Ingla) and 9 directors (Josep Maria Bartomeu, Xavier Cambra, Alfons Castro, Josep Cubells, Jaume Ferrer, Jordi Moix, Jordi Monés, Toni Rovira and Clàudia Vives-Fierro).
One month later, on 22 July, Javier Faus joins the board.
2004 On 24 February, Laporta's brother-in-law Alejandro Echevarría is appointed as director.
2005 On 31 May 2005, Jordi Monés resigns because of the presidentialist attitude of Laporta. He is followed by Josep Maria Bartomeu, Sandro Rosell and Jordi Moix on 2 June. It is the outcome of a conflict that had existed for more than a year. Javier Faus, who was believed to be close to the other four, leaves the board on 27 June.
On 12 July, Joan Boix and Joan Franquesa become members of the board. That way the board again consists of 14 members, the minimum number of directors the club should have according to the club's by-laws.
On 20 October, Alejandro Echevarría leaves the club. Although Laporta had supported his brother-in-law after the accusations that the latter was a member of a foundation dedicated to the life and works of former Spanish dictator Francisco Franco, Echevarría resigned because of the media pressure.
On 29 November, Rafael Yuste and Albert Perrín become members of the board, followed, on 13 december, by Evarist Murtra and Josep Lluís Vilaseca.
2007 On 5 October, Jacint Borràs joins the board.
On 27 November, Jaume Ferrer is appointed as vice-president.
2008 On 10 July, Albert Vicens, Ferran Soriano, Marc Ingla, Xavier Cambra, Toni Rovira, Clàudia Vives-Fierro, Josep Lluís Vilaseca and Evarist Murtra resign because they don't agree with the reaction of Laporta after the vote of no confidence a few days earlier.
On 28 July, Josep Antonio Colomer, Jordi Torrent and Maria Elena Fort are chosen as new board members. Joan Boix, Joan Franquesa and Rafael Yuste are appointed as vice-presidents.
On 13 August, Patrick Auset and Xavier Bagués join the board.
2009 On 27 March, Josep-Ignasi Macià is appointed as new director, followed by Xavier Sala i Martín and Magda Oranich on 23 April.
On 11 November, Joan Franquesa leaves the club because of personal and professional reasons (read more here). On 13 November, Albert Perrín is appointed as vice-president.
this is an updated version of the second part of a three-parts series on the composition of fc barcelona's board of directors since joan laporta became president. you can read the original series here.
picture: Board members (from left to right) Marc Ingla, Toni Rovira, Ferran Soriano, Claudià Vives-Fierro, Josep Lluís Vilaseca, Evarist Murtra and Xavier Cambra, listening to the resignation speech by Albert Vicens at the press room of the Camp Nou on 10 july 2009.
Last Thursday, the Consell Sènior Blaugrana (Blaugrana Senior Council) publicly presented itself during an event assisted by 100 to 150 people at the Princesa Sofía hotel in Barcelona.
The Consell Sènior Blaugrana wants to unite Barcelona club members who are older than 60 years and are a club member for more than 20 years. The objective of the Council is to provide ideas that can lead to a better management and a better public image of the club.
The executive committee of the Council consists of six people and is presided by Catalan business man Ramón Pont, who is rumoured to be part of the candidacy of former Barcelona sports vice-president Sandro Rosell (read more here). Rosell, who will run for president next year, assisted the event. The committee also includes the fathers of Rosell and of his right-hand man Josep Maria Bartomeu (see below).
The main focus of the Council is at this moment the elaboration of an ethical code for the club which should make the decisions taken by the club more transparent.
A first draft of the code has been drawn up by university professors Antonio Argandoña and Fermín Morales and is based on the principles of legality, honesty and service to the members, loyalty to the club, information and transparency, participation, pluralism and austerity.
Apart from giving some general criteria, the code would more concretely want to avoid certain specific acts, among which getting involved in conflicts of interest, putting pressure on others to obtain a decision in the benefit of oneself or of a third party, hiring relatives as an employee or a commercial partner, disclosing corporate decisions to third parties that are not involved, publicly or privately behaving in a way that damages the image of the club, accepting commissions and accepting gifts that can lead to a lack of objectivity.
The ultimate goal is that, after the upcoming presidential elections, this ethical code would become part of the club's by-laws and that an ethical commission would be put in place to safeguard the code by controlling and sanctioning the acts by the club's directors and executives. The commission would consist of six people and the president of the commission would be part of the board of directors.
members of the executive committee of the consell sènior blaugrana:
Josep Maria Bartomeu chairman of the TEAM group >>> father of Josep Maria Bartomeu, who is rumoured to be part of Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell’s team of directors
Ramón Garriga former chief executive of the TÜV Rheinland group in Spain
Joan Granados former chief executive of FC Barcelona and former general director of Catalan public media corporation CCRTV >>> father of Roger Granados, who is rumoured to be part of Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell’s team of directors
Jordi Montané chairman of the Pontex group
Ramón Pont chairman of the Borges group >>> rumoured to be part of Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell’s team of directors
Jaume Rosell former secretary of FC Barcelona and chairman of the FAR group >>> father of Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell
picture: Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell (centre) with the six members of the executive committee of the Senior Blaugrana Council on Thursday 12 November in Barcelona. At Rosell's right hand, you see Ramón Pont, president of the Council, on Rosell's left hand side, you see his father Jaume Rosell.
sources: as, el 9 esportiu, el mundo deportivo, e-notícies, esadir.blogspot.com, pelikano, sport
Speaking to Catalan radio station RAC 1, Barcelona director and treasurer Xavier Sala i Martín has made clear that he thinks there will be only one current board member running for president and that this should in his opinion be first vice-president Alfons Godall:
"I'm convinced there will be one continuating candidacy. It hasn't yet been decided who will lead that list, although Alfons Godall could be the right person. If it would depend on me, he would be our candidate but I would accept it if Jaume Ferrer would be the one.
I think Godall could be a good president for the club. He has a more moderate profile than Laporta but he was always on the right side when crucial decisions have been made over the past six years, like the appointments of Txiki and Guardiola, the exit of Ronaldinho, the transfer of Eto'o... All that makes me trust him.
I've been working with him to prepare a candidacy and I'm sure the most critical board members, those who were said to be going their own way, will end up joining us. There always has been more consensus than people have been saying, the differences weren't as big. It's true that some directors were interested in leading a candidacy but there's no talk anymore about two board candidacies.
Our campaign sure won't be a dirty one. We won't spread lies, we don't control news media. We just want to show the people what we have achieved over the past years."
Speaking to Catalan local news site cugat.cat, former Barcelona vice-president Joan Franquesa, who resigned last week (read more here), has said that he at this moment doesn't plan to take part in next year's elections:
"I will keep on following the news about the club very closely and I will always stay a Barcelona fan.
I have now taken a step back and although I'm a rather restless person, I don't have any plans to take part in the election process. Maybe somewhere in the future, time will tell.
I would want the future president of Barcelona to understand the values that a group of people brought to the club in 2003. Values of modernity and progress, of seeing the board as a place where you cannot just appear but where you have to serve the club and not serve yourself.
A catalanist board, where a job should be well-done, giving priority to the club and this shouldn't be just words or slogans but realities. I want a president who makes this values his owns and I'm sure the fans will be able to find out who is like that and who isn't. That won't be a very difficult task."
Catalan sports paper El Mundo Deportivo claims that Barcelona president Joan Laporta has been in contact with Catalan political consultants Alex Terés and Jordi Segarra (picture below), who advised current United States president Barack Obama during the last months of his election campaign last year.
Laporta would have met several times with Terés and Segarra and although it's not clear if the meetings relate to Barcelona's upcoming elections or Laporta's possible entry in politics, the paper suggests that the financing of the campaign of the board's continuity candidacy led by vice-president Alfons Godall or director Xavier Sala i Martín could be based on the American fundraising model of gifts by supporters.
Last August, the changes made by FC Barcelona's general assembly to the club's by-laws included the date on which the presidential elections should be held.
The third paragraph of Article 39.1 (entitled Call of the elections - Terms) of FC Barcelona's by-laws now reads as follows:
"The elections for the presidency of the Club should be held between 15 March and 15 June, immediately preceding the termination of the mandate [...]. If possible, the elections are held on a day on which the first football team of the Club plays an official game at the Camp Nou."
Spanish sports paper As claimed last week, based upon sources from the entourage of Barcelona president Joan Laporta, that the club will organize the elections as soon as possible if the team would win the World Cup for Clubs in December in Abu Dhabi, because this would be believed to possibly benefit the continuity candidate.
If Barcelona qualifies for the first knockout round of the Champions League and plays the second leg at home, that game will be played on Tuesday 9 March or Wednesday 17 March. But as elections are normally organized in the weekend, the first chance to organize the elections could well be in the weekend of 3 and 4 April when Barcelona will play against Athletic Bilbao.
While all media last month seemed to agree that there could well be two current directors who would run for president next year (read more here), the two main Catalan sports papers today claim that one continuity candidacy seems again very likely after last Friday's board reshuffle (read more here).
This conclusion is drawn after vice-presidents Alfons Godall (picture, on the left) and Jaume Ferrer (picture, on the right) were both present at an event for local Barcelona fans clubs in the Catalan city of Premià de Dalt on Sunday and suggested that they are willing to be part of one candidacy.
Godall "The moment has come to present a candidacy that unites the experience gained by several people. I do not know if I will be the number one, two or three, but I will take part in the project and I would be delighted if I would be the one leading it. With a good candidate, a good list and a good project, it's possible to win the trust of the club members.
We should end this term as united as possible so that we are able to present an inspiring project from within the club and the board because we believe that this board can go a long way. It is therefore crucial that there are no personal problems within the team to avoid the possibility of conflicts. I think that the last reshuffle of the board will have very positive effects."
Ferrer "Godall would be a fantastic president, he would do very well. I haven't decided anything yet, but I would like to continue working for Barça the way I'm doing now. If Godall wants me to continue, there will be no problem to be part of the same candidacy. I feel very comfortable with him and in general I am feeling great. Alfons and I share the same idea about the club."
Catalan sports paper Sport claims that Godall is seen as a figure who can unite all board members and that Ferrer would not join a candidacy that would be lead by director Xavier Sala i Martín. Catalan sports paper El Mundo Deportivo observes that Ferrer didn't specify who should lead the continuity candidacy.
Speaking at an event organized by Spanish sports weekly paper Don Balón, Barcelona club member Jaume Roures, chairman and founder of Spanish media group Mediapro that among other things holds the broadcasting rights of FC Barcelona's league games, has said he's not planning to take part in the elections:
"I will never be part of any candidacy for the presidency of Barcelona. People wouldn't vote for me anyway and I'm not stupid. The world of football makes me very nervous because it's not organized the way it should be. The club members will decide what's best for Barça.
For me, Guardiola would be the best president of Barcelona because he perfectly knows the sport, the club and the country. He worked with our company for a while and he's one of the many intelligent people that were part of the Dream Team."