Saturday, May 15, 2010

The Quotes: Oliver, Ingla, Salvat, Rosell, Plaza

"118.663 club members will be able to vote."

Joan Oliver

"Rosell was the first element of destabilization in our first season at the club, which was a critical year for us at a financial and sporting level. He acted immaturely."

Marc Ingla

"As a boy, I wanted to be a player. Laureano Ruiz [former coach of the youth academy] came for me twice when I was playing at Escolapis de Sarrià, and my father each time asked him: 'Will he become a Maradona?' And after the reply that you cannot predict that, my father always said: 'Well, then he should continue to study'."

Santiago Salvat

"The club has a debt of 489 million euros."

Sandro Rosell

"The only continuism possible is that of the team."

Alexis Plaza

read more election quotes here

Torres not rejecting approach by Rosell

British tabloid The Daily Mail claims that Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell has contacted the representatives of Liverpool forward Fernando Torres (26). With the player being concerned over speculation surrounding his club's future, Rosell is said to have been encouraged by the response he got.

Torres would be a possible substitute of Barcelona forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who has reportedly been offered to English Premier League clubs Chelsea and Manchester City but the two teams would prefer to sign Torres, who would cost around 82 million euros. If Barcelona would sign Valencia striker David Villa in the coming weeks, a transfer of Torres would become difficult.

Read more:
Torres confirms good relationship with Rosell
Villa to be presented before the elections
The program of Sandro Rosell

Benedito: "We want to listen to the member"

Barcelona presidential candidate Agustí Benedito gave an interview to Spanish football site Mercafutbol.

translation: jakob zsambok

Were you disappointed when you saw the election timetable?
Maybe disappointed is the wrong word, but the club statutes indicate that the election date should be a date which promotes maximum participation in the election. So in theory the elections should be held on a game day. As it is now, the collection of signatures has to start on 14 May [note: the collection will in the end start on 17 may]. With this decision we have to validate all the signatures in two instead of three days.

The board are justifying the election date, because they wanted to make sure the election process doesn't detract the first team.
I don't know how they can justify that this way, because I do not understand how a football player can be detracted by something that happens outside of the stadium. It doesn't make any sense.

Anyway, you contacted more than 2.300 cub members and traveled 12.000 kilometres to promote your candidacy, and you have about 5.000 contacts on facebook, so it surely shouldn't be much of a problem for you to collect the required 2095 signatures?
It's true we've already had the honour to talk with many of the socios, and we wish to continue to do so. To talk and, above all, to listen. Right now my facebook account has exceeded the limit of new friends request, but we also have many other support groups.
We believe that by continuing to work with the same conviction, we will reach the required signatures. Over the last six months, we have received a great deal of support, so we wont stop.

What about the other candidates, which ones do you think will have more problems getting the required signatures?
I don't know how the final days of the election will work out, but because of my experience with other elections, I can say that getting the signatures requires hard work by any candidate. You have to do a lot of talking with the members, to try to convince them of your project, it's not an easy thing to do. I saw other candidates who did not talk with the socios at all. In the last six months, I tried to talk to as many as possible, I don't know how the others gather their support, but in any case I'm sure Sandro Rosell will obtain the required signatures, because he had a lot of time to prepare for his campaign. As for the others, I'm not sure.

We talked about facebook. The importance of new technologies in this campaign is incredible.
I think it all roots in the positive evolution of our society. Social networks are becoming more important every day, and as a consequence, Barça has to adapt to those changes. Obviously this wasn't the case in previous elections.

Did you use facebook or twitter before your candidacy?
I did use facebook but just for my close friends, I never used twitter before.

If you win the elections, will you use those technologies to get closer to the socios?
Definitely! They are very powerful tools, with some limitations though, because they do not reach all age groups, but those elements are anyway gradually gaining more importance.

The importance of the new technologies is one of the big differences of this election process in comparison to those of the past. Did you spot any other differences, as you have already participated in four previous elections?
For us there were not many other differences to previous elections, because our principle has always been to get as close as possible to the members. We like to say that our secret weapon are the people, we didn't change our willingness to listen and to look after the member.
What did change are the types of members, because of the current 168.000 members, 88.000 have joined the club after the election of Laporta. That means those members haven't been members for a long time. There were also 40.000 who joined but already left. So we have to assume that there is a greater volatility in comparison to previous elections where we had a fixed group of members with a large number of guaranteed voters.

this was the first part of this interview. you can read the second part here and the third part here.

Read more:
Benedito: "Our secret weapon are the people"
[pictures] Presidential candidates in Paris
Benedito says others have political and media links

interview: elena fernández

Guixa presents campaign logo and slogan

Barcelona presidential candidate Jaume Guixà has yesterday presented his campaign logo. The slogan he will use during the coming weeks will be "Un nou estil" [A new style].

Ferrer will also use a campaign bus

Barcelona presidential candidate Jaume Ferrer has announced in a press release that he will use a campaign bus in the coming weeks to collect signatures of club members. The bus will make his first ride on Sunday in the surroundings of the Camp Nou stadium where Barcelona will play the last league game against Valladolid.

Read more:
Ferrer wants to personally head social area
[Video] Benedito presenting his campaign bus
Ferrer and Ingla met last weekend

[picture] The women of Sandro Rosell

Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell met yesterday with a group of female Barcelona fans.

Friday, May 14, 2010

The electoral proceedings

by xaviniesta

On Monday 30 April, the Barcelona board of directors officially called the elections for Barcelona president on 13 June 2010. The Board, in the exercise of their mandate under the club statutes, in particular articles 39 and 50, agreed that the following proceedings will be observed in the conduct of the elections.

1. Creation of the Electoral Commission and Committee
The members of the Electoral Commission and Electoral Committee will be drawn in a public event to be held at the club premises on Friday 14 May. These electoral bodies will be formally constituted on Sunday 16 May.

2. Posting of the Electoral Roll
The official electoral roll, or list of qualified voters, will be made available at the FCB Supporters Service Office starting Monday 17 May until Friday 21 May for consultation and reference of the club members. Claims against the electoral roll must be made in writing and presented to the Electoral Commission not later than Friday 21 May. The Commission will approve the official electoral roll on May 24, after it shall have dealt with all claims.

3. Submission of candidates' list
The list of candidates must be presented to the Electoral Commission starting Tuesday 25 May until Tuesday 1 June. The list must be in writing and contain at least 14, but not more than 21, members, including one candidate for the Presidency.

4. Submission of letters of support
The candidates' list must be submitted together with no fewer than 2.095 official letters of support from club members as well as an undertaking, in proper legal form, to sign a financial guarantee, if needed.

5. Announcement of qualified candidates
The Electoral Commission will verify that candidates have met the conditions for candidacy and have submitted the required signatures' support, after which it will announce, on 3 June, the candidate lists qualified to stand for elections.

6. One candidate list qualifies or presented
In the event only one candidate list fulfills the requirements, or only candidate list is presented, this candidate list will be declared elected and the electoral process will end.

7. More than one candidate lists qualify or presented
If more than one candidacy qualifies, the electoral process will take its course, starting with the opening of the official campaign period that will run from Friday 4 June and end at Friday 11 June.

8. Day of Reflection
A day of reflection will be observed on Saturday 12 June. Candidates will be prohibited from engaging in any direct or indirect campaign activities such as interviews, passing or publishing of campaign propaganda, putting up of posters, and other similar public actions.

9. Election Day
Voting for a new Barcelona president and his board will take place at the Camp Nou on Sunday 13 June from 9:00 to 21:00.

10. Official count and proclamation of winners
The counting of the ballots will begin immediately after the voting period ends and the winners thereafter proclaimed jointly by the Electoral Commission and Electoral Committee. The new Barcelona president and his board will officially take up their posts on 1 July.

Read more:
Who can vote in the elections?
Official election calendar announced
Who is eligible as president?

[2003] Bassat adds big names to his project

source: el mundo deportivo, friday 16 may 2003, pages 1 and 16


He presents his candidacy today with the incorporation of Alemany and Roca Junyent as people responsible for the Foundation

The publicist wants a change in the statutes that would allow the foundation to have the economic control of Barça

Bassat presents his candidacy today and adds Salvador Alemany and Miquel Roca

The publicist appears on stage today and proposes a change of the statutes that would give the foundation economic and assets control of the club

Lluís Bassat finally presents his candidacy today, at noon, and Salvador Alemany will be on the picture. The publicist has also managed to include in his project Miquel Roca i Junyent, who will be the second man of Alemany at the foundation. In the project that will be proposed, this institution would take the economic control of Barça, which would take a new change of the statutes.

Alemany, who is still the president of the basketball section, has in the end decided to accept the offer of Bassat - and not the one of other candidates like Josep Martínez-Rovira and Jaume Llauradó - after a series of meetings, although Bassat had to accept a number of conditions, including the changes of the statutes that will give great importance to the Foundation.

check more 2003 election stories

Minguella and Medina to be vice-presidents Salvat

Speaking at a press conference, Barcelona presidential candidate Santiago Salvat has said that former Barcelona presidential candidates Josep Maria Minguella [picture, on the left] and Jordi Medina [picture, second from the right] will become vice-presidents if he's elected as president on 13 June:

"Josep María Minguella will be our sports vice-president. Although he has a huge experience, he will not take any decision on his own, but always with the agreement of the coach. And Jordi Medina, who is one of the strongest people in this candidacy, would become the vice-president of the social area."

Read more:
Salvat wants declaration on personal estates
Medina will be vice-president Salvat
Salvat officially presents his candidacy

Zubizarreta: "No candidate has contacted me"

Former Barcelona goalkeeper Andoni Zubizarreta gave an interview to Catalan sports paper Sport.

After seven years in office, your former teammate Txiki Begiristain seems ready to leave the post of sports director, and your name has been mentioned as a possible substitute...
I already learned long ago not to comment on rumours and speculation. Txiki has done a great job, the remarkable results are there to prove that. Everything else will be talked about after the "next game".

The bar is very high, but with your experience at Barça and after having been the general director of Athletic Bilbao you are ready for the challenge...
The bar in a big team like Barça is always high because the expectations are maximum, it's not enough to win, you should also play well. The style is there and that's a small advantage for anyone who takes over. One can only think about how to improve it, but that will be the task of the one who will be in charge.

Has a presidential candidate contacted you?
None told me anything, and I have the feeling that the election campaign has not yet begun, because the sporting results and the close league finish postpone the election issue a bit. There's nothing.

Read more:
Zubizarreta is an option to replace Begiristain
Ex-players Amor and Migueli linked with Rosell
Begiristain proposes Zubizarreta as his successor

Benedito says others have political and media links

Speaking to Spanish news agency EFE, Barcelona presidential candidate Agustí Benedito has criticized the links other candidates have with political parties and says that he is the only candidate who guarantees political, economic and media independence:

"It's clear that CiU [centre-right wing catalan nationalists] has its candidate: they are supporting or can easily be linked to the candidacy of Sandro Rosell, while it's even more clear that the entourage of PSC [left wing party] or the top people of PSC have in some way ties with the candidacy of Marc Ingla.

It's very clear that there's a political game going on in the background while we should above anything try to maintain the independence of Barça, not only politically but also economically and as far as the media are concerned because both main media groups of this city are also lining up with one of those two candidacies."

Read more:
Benedito: "Our secret weapon are the people"
The Pic: The bus of Benedito
Benedito could limit number of club members

Weekly Round-up (22): Cruyff. Catalonia. Unicef.

Every week an overview of the posts from this blog, written by Xaviniesta, is published on Barcelona news site totalBarca.

Barcelona president Joan Laporta believes that the cornerstones of Barcelona’s success are Johan Cruyff, Catalonia, and Unicef.

Laporta claims he has consistently defended the current model which he said is built on certain principles, in particular: ‘more than a club’ in the social area, the youth academy, and Cruyff in the sports area.

He also said, reportedly, that certain groups that were originally part of the project left because of their immaturity and inability to deal with pressure, claiming that those who remained at the club are the ones that stayed true to the project and can best ensure its continuity.

>>> read the complete weekly round-up here

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The program of Sandro Rosell

Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell answered yesterday at a press conference questions about his project.

If Pep agrees, we will always support the transfers. But from experience, we know that signing players before elections could cost you 30 to 50 per cent more than when you do it after them, so you should take that into account.

We don't want to talk about which people should stay or leave because that's something you should do from 14 June on. If it's true that Txiki leaves, we have candidates to fill his place.

Having a deal with Higuain would mean we're not thinking about Barça but about other things. No, that rumour is not true.

The favourite in the elections is always the continuity candidate, whoever that may be this time because I admit I'm a bit lost.

We will talk with him about how he sees his task as honorary president but the members will also have their say.

Pedro and Jeffren
We went to sign them in Tenerife for 30.000 euro each.

We'll build a new Palau with 10.000-12.000 seats and a little Palau with 2.000-3.000 seats.

I don't think it would be good that candidates claim Guardiola just to make a good impression on the club members. But it's a fact that he's a good friend of mine for about 20 years.

We won't agree with everything he proposes. He didn't sign yet but he gave his word and I'm sure that he will stay. But we'll only agree with his proposals if we like them. If he asks something we don't like, we won't follow him. But we know that everything he will ask will be reasonable. If we win,we will reach an agreement in 15 minutes.

I would want him to stay for many years. A bit like Ferguson, although then I'm talking about the time in office not about the function.

Economic situation
If we're elected, we will do audits and of course explain to the members, who is the owner of the club, the real situation, no matter who would or would not be happy with that.

It would be contradictory to have Unicef on your chest and have deals with countries like Uzbekistan. If those deals exist, we will immediately cancel them.

New technologies
The 2.0 technologies will be very important to communicate with the club members.

There's nothing.

Barcelona Atlètic
If the team promotes to the second division, they will play the main home games at the Camp Nou.

Ronaldinho commission
No comment, I refer to the press release we've put out.

Electoral pacts
We won't make a deal with anyone.

Foster project
We won't maintain the project and given the current cost of that, no one else will do that either. It's impossible. We nevertheless want to remodel and cover the stadium.

Radical fan groups
I congratulate president Laporta for the courage decision to keep them out of the stadium.

We think it's unacceptable that the general director of the club uses money of the club members to investigate directors of the club.

Current Barça
Regarding the sports area, this is the best Barça in history. Economically and socially it is not.

Limiting number of members
We will not cut the number but we will regulate the entrance of new members. The current system doesn't work. New technologies will help in this area.

Read more:
Rosell linked with Valencia winger Mata
Cardoner: "The member always has the last word"
Rosell leading in university poll

Candidates are trying to interfere in transfer talks

Asked about possible transfer deals to be closed before the elections on 13 June, Barcelona president Joan Laporta has said at a book presentation yesterday that presidential candidates are trying to upset ongoing transfer negotations the club is trying to conclude:

"We do not want to close transfer deals in a hurry, we just try to fulfil the demands of the technical staff. But a transfer can become more expensive when there are interferences from people who want to claim that transfer.

We are dealing with some cases for a long time, holding calm and private talks from club to club. But there are people who are harming the interests of Barça. That is what a candidate is doing. I call on the candidates to let the club interests prevail over electoral interests. The club is on the right track and now is the time to act."

Asked about this issue, Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell has denied in an interview with Catalan television station TV3 that he feels aimed at by the statements of the president:

"I don't feel referred to, I didn't talk with any club so I don't know who he's talking about. It should be another candidate. And besides, several papers are already saying for weeks that contracts have been closed so even when a candidate would try to interfere, that wouldn't change anything."

Read more:
Rosell worried about transfers of Cesc and Villa
Villa to be presented before the elections
Rosell linked with Valencia winger Mata

[video] Rosell presenting his candidacy

On Tuesday, Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell presented his candidacy. This video shows the build-up to his speech.

Ferrer wants to personally head social area

Speaking at a meeting with Barcelona fans and club members, Barcelona assets vice-president and presidential candidate Jaume Ferrer has said that he will himself be responsable for dealing with the club members if he's elected as president:

"If I'm the president, I will personally lead the social area. I want to devote time and energy to the club member and I will myself be present at events and meeting organized by fan clubs. I think that the social area has been the area that has been forgotten the most."

Read more:
Ferrer and Ingla met last weekend
Rosell leading in university poll
Ferrer gets new support from board members

[picture] Ingla and former Catalan president

Last Friday, Barcelona presidential candidate Marc Ingla watched the semi-final of the Euroleague Basketball - Barcelona-CSKA Moscow - at his campaign headquarters together with former Catalan president (2003-2006) and former mayor of Barcelona (1982-1997) Pasqual Maragall [picture, on the left].

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Rosell linked with Valencia winger Mata

Valencia regional newspaper Levante-EMV claims that Barcelona presidential candidate Sabndro Rosell has reached a personal deal with Valencia left winger Juan Mata (22).

If Rosell would be elected as president of FC Barcelona on 13 June, Mata would join Barcelona for a transfer fee of 20 million euros. The player would triple his year salary and get a little less than 2,5 million euros each season.

Speaking at a press conference today, Mata has denied the rumours: "I don't have signed a contract or a pre-agreement with anyone. At this time of the season, there are names of players and clubs popping up everywhere, but there's still a league game and a World Cup ahead.

I won't let myself be distracted by the stream of rumours. I have a contract with Valencia, I'm happy and have a lot of years left here. The most important thing for me is the sporting aspect and I cannot complain there since I have played a lot this season. The rest are only rumours."

Read more:
Transfer battle between board and Rosell
Villa to be presented before the elections
Rosell worried about transfers of Cesc and Villa

Llaurado will not run for president

Catalan sports paper Sport reports that former Barcelona vice-president Jaume Llauradó, who yesterday assisted the meeting of Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell, has released a note in which he announces that he will not take part in the upcoming elections for president of FC Barcelona because of personal reasons.

Jaume Llauradó was a pre-candidate in the elections of 1997 and 2000, when he ended up joining the candidacy of the later president Joan Gaspart, in whose board Llauradó was a vice-president from 2000 until he resigned after one year because he didn't agree with the way the club was governed.

In 2003, he was a presidential candidate but finished 6th and last in the elections won by Joan Laporta. He obtained 987 votes (1,91%), which was considerably lower than the number of signatures he had been able to collect. Llauradó is also the president of FC Barcelona think tank
Fòrum Samitier.

Read more:
Llaurado close to renouncing his candidacy
Possible candidate Llaurado buys football club
Llaurado to announce candidacy at last minute

Godall: "Rosell has similarities with Florentino"

Barcelona first vice-president Alfons Godall gave an interview to Catalan sports paper Sport.

translation: jacob coronado

You have distanced yourself from te club but you didn't quit the vice-presidency.
Following the situation that was created on 22 March I was looking for my spot, electorally but also on a personal level and as a director. I let the president know through Cubells [board secretary] and Oliver [chief executive] that I didn't have the motivation to continue and that I would resign if he though that was appropriate.

Why did you not resign yourself?
Because the end of the current mandate is in a matter of weeks and the teams are playing for titles. A unilateral resignation would not have been good for the board, the environment, nor anyone else.

How did the dissolution of you +Barça project occur?
Joan Laporta's support for the project seemed great, I thought it could help. But I've always felt that a candidate must have the freedom to choose his colleagues and to me, it was crucial to reach an agreement with Soriano and his people.

This was the key point in losing the support of the President on 22 March?
Everything went very quickly. Laporta gave great importance to the fact that I assured him I would be the number one and that I would count on many of the current directors. For me, the project itself was more important that my actual role. I do not believe in the continuism, but more in the experience of the people who know the club and have participated in building the project since 2003. He did not share my point of view and decided to withdraw his support and give it to Jaume Ferrer.

How do you value that decision?
I respect it but I believe that he wants to be too involved in the electoral process. They are not Laporta's elections but post-Laporta. There is also the question of formality. The decision could have been taken in another fashion without the sudden action which hurt me a lot because we have a strong relationship and friendship.

And then there is the proposal of Ingla...
That same week, Soriano also abandoned the idea of being a candidate due to his commitments to Spanair. I was concerned and disappointed and I think Ferran was too. We spent two weeks sending text messages, and one day we decided we had to do something. We thought we had a good project for the club. Marc [Ingla] had already proposed to be a candidate and we decided to take the plunge.

What is the basis of your new project?
We see that there is a clear space between the continuism imposed by the current president and the change of Rosell which from our point of view is not appropriate if there is a model that currently works very well. The idea is to recover four of the architects of the first project of 2003 and who have been vice-presidents doing a good job in the economic, sporting, social, and institutional area and leaving the media attention to the players.

What are the differences with respect to Jaume Ferrer?
More than in the program, in the project itself. I've always had a reservation about the project of Jaume. There are different stimuli or engines that make me think that it is not consistent. He has a personal and professional environment that may detract the independence necessary to decide whether he will be eligible in the end or not. I am speaking specifically of the links with the Pujol Ferrusola family, for which he works. Also the role of Alejandro Echevarría, I know that he has a big role in the candidacy on the motivational, strategic and logistical level. And the role of some directors who were afraid to stay out and thought they wouldn't have a role in any candidacy.

What about Rosell?
It's true that we need a certain change regarding the forms. But what Rosell preaches is very extreme, and comes in part from resentment or revenge. It is essential to maintain the sporting model with a sport director and a coach and if possible those should be Txiki and Pep. We want to respect our commitment to the style of play, based on our youth academy, and that contrasts with that of Rosell who has a sports philosophy that is more result-based, changeable according to the coach of the moment and the results. In that sense, his model has more similarities with that of Florentino Pérez.

Read more:
Godall: "It's a team project against ego projects"
The Pic: Four (former) vice-presidents
Ingla: "We are the real continuity candidacy"

Guixa wants to export youth academy

Barcelona presidential candidate Jaume Guixà has explained yesterday in a press release that he wants to strengthen and export the club's youth academy which he sees as one of the cornerstones of the current Barça:

"It has been proven that the model of our youth academy works and therefore our intention is to globalize the model of the sports residence. That way, we don't only make sure that our club becomes more international, but we also make it possible that players from other countries can join our youth teams and to become key players of the first team in the future."

Read more:
The Decalogue of Jaume Guixa
Rosell leading in university poll
Guixa: "We want to help other Catalan clubs"

[picture] The gadgets of Marc Ingla

One of the gadgets used by Barcelona presidential candidate Marc Ingla during the campaign are these yellow baller bands.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Live Coverage: Press conference Sandro Rosell

today at 7:30 pm, barcelona presidential candidate sandro rosell will give his first press conference ahead of the elections. we will follow it live. refresh!

rosell arriving at his seat earlier today:

people at the seat waiting for the press conference:

rosell still in the offices of his campaign headquarters. the press conference would be postponed for 10 minutes.

it is expected that rosell will give a brief explanation of his election program (that is already available at his new website and that he then will present his board team. tomorrow he will answer questions from the press at another press conference.

team members of sandro rosell waiting for his arrival, at the frontrow jordi cardoner on the right and javier faus at the left.

rosell arriving

speech rosell:
"welcome at our seat, we want this to be a meeting point for barcelona fans over the coming weeks.

a while ago i said "never say never". now i say "now". i present my candidacy for the presidency of fc barcelona.

why only now? i waited because i wanted to respect the team and the club. we didn't want to put more pressure on the players and i wanted to follow the statuted.

first i want to ask an applause for the team. [applause]

we want a barça that is more participatory, we want a happy barça, where the members are proud on their club.

i present myself because i am a great barcelona fan and because i love catalonia. i want to make barça a reference in the world and i feel capable of leading a project.

i am a member, i want to be president but stay a member.

i feel surrounded by a great team of professionals, a great group of barcelona fans from 30 somethings to 60 somethings.

the club member needs to recover a voice in the club. we want to give the general assemblies more power.

we want a family club, starting with the game hours and the animation at the camp nou.

i think i know the world of football well and i want to bring this experience to the club. i have helped the club sign players like ronaldinho, deco, eto'o and pedro.

we want to sign great players at reasonable prices, it's possible, but we will do it in coordination with the coach. but our main cornerstone will be the youth academy.

we also want to strengthen the economic area.

another important thing is how we see the barça of 2020. i for example want a stadium that is remodelled, not with the foster project. a more particpatory barcelona.

we are all barça."

end of the speech.

a video has started with friends, family members and collaborators of rosell giving their opinions.

Cardoner: "The member always has the last word"

This blog had an interview with Jordi Cardoner, who will be a member of the board team proposed by Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell.

TRANSPARENCY AND CONTROL In recent decades the club has seen some cases where there were doubts about members of the board doing business using the club or favouring people of their entourage. The Consell Sènior Blaugrana, a council linked to the candidacy of Sandro Rosell, has been working on an ethical code that would regulate what directors can and can not do. A first draft had been submitted in November of last year but since then nothing has been heard about the project nor has any text been published allowing the fans to evaluate the proposals. Dou you still intend to adopt an ethical code and include it in the statutes of the club?
The Consell Sènior, with the help of more than 250 club members of Barça, has done a very positive job. Incorporating a ethcical code that can serve as a guideline for the rulers of the club would be very useful, but in any case it will be the member who will assess and decide this. We must not forget that in FC Barcelona the member, its owner, always has the last word.

Will the members of the board of Sandro Rosell make public their personal assets, something that has been promised by the candidate Agustí Benedito?
No, that would undermine the basic principles of law. Honesty is a responsibility of every individual member of the board of directors of the club, and that of the whole is the responsibility of the president. Unfortunately in our society, and for obvious reasons because of things that have happened and happen too often, people have lost confidence in others, but mechanisms like this would dehumanize and reduce the values of the institution.

There are rumours that say that some candidates are trying to manipulate the Barcelona fans using supposedly neutral Facebook groups or pages, for example groups that spread news about the election or groups of young fans. You can confirm that people who are part of the candidacy of Sandro Rosell haven't created Facebook groups or pages without mentioning their link with the candidacy?
The member of Barça is a lot more intelligent than many imagine, he is analytical person and doesn't let himself be influenced by simple comments on the web. You cannot manipulate the member of Barça through the internet. We really like direct contact, frank dialogue, without masks. The web can make people hide, it should be an additional means, but never replace real contact.

NUMBER OF CLUB MEMBERS In Catalonia, there is some fear among the season ticket holders of FC Barcelona that the club members without a season ticket might "take over" the club. It seems that it's also because of this that some candidates (like Agustí Benedito) seem to be looking for ways to limit the number of club members. The candidacy of Sandro Rosell wants to limit the number of club members or make the process of becoming a member more difficult?
Today it's very easy to become a member of Barça. Any person anywhere in the world can become a member through the internet. It is an issue that we will take to the general assembly, all the club members should decide on this.

PRESIDENT JOAN LAPORTA In the elections of 2003, you gave your support to the candidacy of Joan Laporta. Why?
Yes. I did that because of the friendship I had and still have with Sandro Rosell and Josep Maria Bartomeu.

What do you think about the work regarding the social area by the Barcelona board from 2003 until now?
Insufficient, the club member has been distanced from the decision-making process of his club. The club member should not be seen as a client, but as a part of the club.

HONORARY PRESIDENT You think that members should have the chance to vote on the appointment of Johan Cruyff as honorary president of FC Barcelona, through the general assembly of delegates (proposed by the candidate Jaume Guixà) or through a referendum (proposed by the candidate Agustí Benedito)?
Who has to decide is the member, the general assembly is a sovereign body.

CAMPAIGN Based on the statutes of the club - that for sure do not limit the electoral debate in time - or the alleged risk for the stability of the football team, the candidacy of Sandro Rosell will apparently not come out before May, which may limit the time to discuss your ideas to about a month. As there is only an election every six years, the members and the fans don't have the right to have a longer campaign, where you can discuss calmly and thoroughly the future of the club?
Our candidacy wants to respect the dates that the statutes indicate as the electoral period.

In your interviews, you have said that the candidacy of Sandro Rosell wants a clean campaign and you have always been very respectful towards the board and the current president. In part of the Barcelona entourage, people nevertheless have the feeling that there are several media - some of them have (correctly or incorrectly) been linked in some way with Sandro Rosell - who are doing the "dirty work" for your candidacy, praising Sandro Rosell and attacking other candidates or the president of the club, giving you the opportunity not to "stain your hands" in public and to maintain a good image of not wanting to divide the Barcelona fans. What do you think about that feeling? And more generally: what should be in your opinion the role of media in the elections: they must try to inform the fans as neutral as possible or they can - openly or in secret - chose the side of a candidate?
Your question upsets me because it assumes "dirty tricks" on our part. If one really thinks that, I would ask him not to vote for us.

BLOG Since September of last year you started the blog "The best fans of the world" where you publish articles on the club and the campaign. As far as I can tell, you have a style of writing that is pleasant for the reader. You have always liked writing?
I've always liked not to create or cause misunderstandings, and you can avoid those by writing in an understandable way, in my language we say "clar i català" [clear and catalan], in other words calling things by their name.

You will continue with the blog after 13 June if Sandro Rosell wins? And if he does not win the elections?
I didn't consider putting an end to my blog. I think it's necessary to have open lines of communication with the members, and as long as my readers allow me, I will continue to write.

BARCELONA FANS ABROAD You share the analysis that Barça cannot grow a lot anymore in Catalonia or Spain while at the same time there's an almost unlimited potential of fans abroad and that this is why the club (apart from of course take care of the roots) should focus more than ever on the rest of the world?
Barça is a Catalan club and a club from Catalonia, that has at the same time a huge potential for growth outside of the country. I think that in Catalonia and in Spain we can continue to grow, Barça will always grow.

If you win the election, José Maria Barnils could be appointed as "ambassador" of the club abroad. What will his function exactly be?
José Maria Barnils would be the person of the social commission responsible of the fan clubs abroad. José Maria, a member since his birth (number 6.000), knows what one feels and how it feels like to be a Barcelona fan more than 2.000 kilometres from the stadium. He lives in Denmark for more than 15 years and his love for the club continues to grow. He's a great Barcelona fan and a better friend.

The most fundamental right of a club member is the right to vote. If Sandro Rosell is elected as president, what will you do to encourage the participation in the elections of the members who live far from the Camp Nou? Will you introduce internet voting, voting by mail and/or voting by delegation?
We need to make it easier to vote for those who are unable to do so or for whom it's too expensive because of the distance. We hope that in six years the internet voting will offer all security guarantees so we can make the participation in the elections easier for the member.

Many thanks for the interview and good luck in the campaign.

this was the second and last part of this interview, you can read the first part here.

Read more:
Team member Rosell talking about their project
Rosell leading in university poll
Rosell plans embassador for foreign fan clubs

[2003] The battle for the signatures has started

source: el mundo deportivo, tuesday 13 may 2003, page 22

Rovira, Bassat and Llauradó want to make an impact with the signatures

They will ask 200.000, 170.000 and 120.000 slips; none of the other candidates will ask more than 15.000

The battle for the 1.529 signatures needed to become an official candidate in the presidential elections has started. The club already knows the exact number of slips that each of the candidates (except Joan Laporta) intends to ask.

The statutes of FC Barcelona state that the club puts at the disposal of the candidates for free a number of slips that doubles the number of signatures that are required. Apart from those 3.058 papers, each candidate can get an additional number for which he has to pay six euro cents each.

Based upon the requests of the eight candidates, we can see a clear gap between Josep Martínez-Rovira, Lluís Bassat and Jaume Llauradó, and the remaining five.

The first has asked for 200.000 slips, 30.000 more than Bassat, while Llauradó wants 120.000 slips. The reason for those high numbers is that all three candidates want to use the mailing service offered by FC Barcelona to send their project to the club members.

Far behind them are the requests of the others, which do not exceed 15.000 slips. That figure is what was asked by Josep Maria Minguella. Jordi Majó has asked 7.000, while Jordi Casas and Jordi Medina want 6.000. The legal advisers of Laporta were last night still in the process of making a decision on the number.

check more 2003 election stories

Ingla plans referendums on shirts and stadium

At a press conference yesterday, Barcelona presidential candidate Marc Ingla has explained together with his team member Alfons Godall, current Barcelona first vice-president, that he wants to get the club members more involved in the decision-making process of the club.

The members would be able to have a say in three kinds of decisions: strategic projects (for example the remodelling of the Camp Nou, the new Palau or the projects of the Foundation), functioning of the club (for example the design and the colours of the team outfits and the design of the new membership card) and representation of the club (for example the members of honour and the names of new facilities)

On those themes, there will be held binding referendums, also via phone and through the internet, in which club members who are older than 18 years and are a member for more than a year, could take part. In the second semester of this year, the first referendums could be organized on the design of the 2011-2012 shirt and the membership card and the projects of the foundation.

Read more:
Ingla: "Barça should be reference of 21st century"
Ferrer and Ingla met last weekend
Former Ingla-Soriano colleague part of candidacy

[video] Salvat watching Sevilla game

Barcelona presidential candidate Santiago Salvat followed the Sevilla-Barcelona league game on Saturday together with the Foment Martinenc fan club and several members of his candidacy, among which former presidential candidate Jordi Medina, in Barcelona.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Rosell keeping two board places open

Catalan sports weekly paper Gol claims that Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell has put together a board team of 17 directors. The former sports vice-president would keep two places open that could be filled in later, possibly after the elections. The Barcelona board can have between 14 and 21 members.

Besides Sandro Rosell, this would be the other 16 members of his board team ahead of the elections on 13 June: Manel Arroyo, Josep Maria Bartomeu, Joan Bladé, Javier Bordas, Jordi Cardoner, Eduard Coll, Silvia Elías, Javier Faus, Pilar Guinovart, Dídac Lee, Jordi Mestre, Susana Monje,í Jordi Moix, Ramon Pont, Josep-Ramon Vidal-Abarca and Carles Vilarrubí.

Read more:
The three areas and vice-presidents of Rosell
The Rosell project
Businesswoman Susana Monje will be treasurer Rosell

Elections officially called

As was agreed during a board meeting on 30 April, Barcelona has today offically published the notification of the elections for the next board of FC Barcelona.

As stipulated by article 39 of the club statutes, the club has to officially call the elections some 35 days before the vote. With the official call of the election, a well-defined process will start ahead of the elections on 13 June.

Read more:
Official election calendar announced
Number of voters and signatures announced
Poll result: 13 june is a good election date?

[pictures] Presidential candidates in Paris

Barcelona's basketball team played yesterday the final of the Euroleague Basketball, the most important European club competition. Barcelona defeated Olympiacos 86-68. It is the club's second Euroleague title.

Four Barcelona presidential candidates assisted the game in Paris: Sandro Rosell [first picture below, during friday's semi-final against cska moscow], Marc Ingla [picture above], Jaume Ferrer [third picture below, in the centre] and Agustí Benedito [second picture below].

Salvat wants declaration on personal estates

At the presentation of his project last week, Barcelona presidential candidate Santiago Salvat has said that his team aims for financial transparency:

"We want to put an end to the lack of openness on the finances of Barça. Among other things, all members of my board team will therefore declare their personal estates before a notary.

We will also sign a contract that excludes any business relationship of ourselves, our closest family members or companies in which we take part with FC Barcelona.

We nevertheless won't talk about lifting the veils because we don't want to make promises we maybe won't be able to fulfil. We don't want to use empty words. One of our goals is to change the statutes to give more participation to the general assembly and the club members. Barça is owned by the members."

Read more:
Salvat officially presents his candidacy
The presentation video of Santiago Salvat
Salvat wants to help others to collect signatures

The Quote: Sandro Rosell

"My youth idol was Johan Cruyff. Together with Cholo Sotil."

Sandro Rosell,
Barcelona presidential candidate

read more election quotes here

Sunday, May 9, 2010

The number: 14.000-15.000

Barcelona presidential candidates Santiago Salvat and Jaume Guixà respectively want to add 14.000 and 15.000 seats to the Camp Nou stadium.

Ferrer and Ingla met last weekend

Catalan sports paper El Mundo Deportivo claims that Barcelona presidential candidates Jaume Ferrer and Marc Ingla met last weekend in the Bonasport sports centre in Barcelona to discuss a possible deal ahead of the elections on Sunday 13 June.

Although they could again meet, an agreement between the two would at this point be unlikely since both Ingla and Ferrer would only want to form one joint candidacy if they can lead it themselves. Ingla would also only want to include two or three people of the group of Ferrer in his candidacy. Some members of the two candidacies would also be against a pact.

Spanish news agency EFE claims that the appearance on stage of the candidacy of former Barcelona marketing and sports vice-president Marc Ingla has been a big moral blow for the team of Barcelona assets vice-president Jaume Ferrer and that both candidacies could meet again although a united candidacy would not be possible at this moment.

Read more:
Ingla: "Barça should be reference of 21st century"
Ferrer gets new support from board members
Godall doesn't believe in Ferrer-Rosell duel

Cardoner: "Fan clubs should get executive power"

This blog had an interview with Jordi Cardoner, who will be a member of the board team proposed by Barcelona presidential candidate Sandro Rosell.

PROFESSIONAL ACTIVITIES What is your profession?
General director of the Spanish branch of a German manufacturer of insulating foams.

Your job could create conflicts of interest in case you would be a member of the board of FC Barcelona from 1 July on?

FAMILY Your grandfather, Nicolau Casaus, has been vice-president of the club and responsable for the social area for more than twenty years and his name is still an almost mythical name in the world of the Barcelona fan clubs. How do you explain that? What has been missing since your grandfather has left the club? And in which way will the work of your grandfather be an example for your own work in the club?
My grandfather understood what it means to be part of Barça, and he always respected the club member, that is why he got respect from the members. Undoubtedly he has been, is and will always be a reference for me and for all those who love the club. To approach the club member is to understand him, and to understand him, first you have to listen to him.

Your sister, Elisabet Cardoner, has been a member of the board for almost six years - from 1997 until 2003 - under the presidencies of Josep Lluís Núñez, Joan Gaspart and Enric Reyna. Have you talked with your sister about what it means to be a director of FC Barcelona? She has given you advice based on her own experience?
Yes, to respect all of those who make Barça great and to only commit to what you can fulfil.

SANDRO ROSELL Since when do you know Sandro Rosell? What has been your relationship over the years? And when has Sandro Rosell asked you to help to set up his candidacy and to be part of his team of future directors?
We know each other for over 15 years, it was Josep Maria Bartomeu [another member of the candidacy of sandro rosell] who introduced us. Today I can say that we are friends. Two years ago, he offered me to be part of his team. After consulting with my family, I thanked him for the offer and confirmed my desire to serve my beloved club, Barça.

In recent months, you have shared many hours with Sandro Rosell during meetings, meals and trips. What kind of person is he? You have discovered new facets of his personality? You can tell us some anecdote?
Sandro is a 'normal' person, close, natural, a friend of his friends and consistent with his principles and values. Throughout our travels and visits around the country, what makes us proud the most is when people approach us and congratulate us because we are 'normal'.

SOCIAL AREA What is the basic philosophy of the candidacy of Sandro Rosell's regarding the social area of FC Barcelona?
To bring the club closer to its owners, who have made it the best club in the world, to return them all what they have given and keep on giving to Barça. To make a more participatory Barça, a meeting point for Barcelona supporters, for the catalanism, with an enormous respect and gratitude to all those outside of Catalonia who feel and love Barça just like the people from here.

FAN CLUBS Your keyword when talking about the penyes, the fan clubs, is "self-management". The candidacy of Sandro Rosell has also approved in its entirety the 'XXI century' project prepared by representatives of the fan clubs. Since the club's interests don't always coincide with the interests of the fan clubs, which mechanisms will you put in place to control the fan clubs?
I do not share the view that the interest of the club doesn't always coincide with the interest of the fan clubs. The fan clubs have no reason of being without the club and the club needs the fan clubs. The fan clubs are, without any doubt, the only identified group that represented the club across the world. I have the utmost respect for them, they are part of our social base. More than 20.000 members of Barça and 200.000 people are involved in the fan clubs. They are our grassroots members.

Are you in favour of appointing a representative of the fan clubs as member of the board of the club, something that has been proposed by the candidate Jaume Guixà?
The fan clubs have their own governing body, the Advisory Council. Today this has no statutory recognition, we want it to be recognized in our statutes, we want to give it executive (and not only advisory) power, we want them to participate in the decision-making process regarding the issues that affect them directly, we want to turn the Advisory Council into the Council of the Fan Clubs. At the same time, we will propose to the general assembly that the Council of the Fan Clubs will be represented in the assembly itself, meaning that the 35 regional delegates are part of the assembly and that this is recognized by the statutes.

this was the first part of this interview. you can read the second part here.

Read more:
Team member Rosell talking about their project
Rosell leading in university poll
Rosell plans embassador for foreign fan clubs