Following the resignation of Josep Maria Bartomeu, the ex-vice-president expressed the opinion that the club and the Catalan government have always had overlapping interests and could not rule out his candidacy to become president.

Rousaud thinks that the Catalan government has always had an interest in Barcelona

Former Barcelona vice-president Emili Rousaud believes the Catalan government has always had an interest in who is president at Camp Nou. Following the resignation of Josep Maria Bartomeu, the ex-vice-president expressed the opinion that the club and the Catalan government have always had overlapping interests and could not rule out his candidacy to become president. “I think the government has always had an interest,” Rousaud told reporters. “But I believe in the political and economic independence of Barcelona. The club will demonstrate when something happens, but not take sides”. Speaking about the possibility of his candidacy, Rousaud did not give too much away. “I could,” he said when asked if he could lead the campaign. “I didn’t make any decisions.”

Bartomeu had a lot to lose

“I’ll decide in the coming weeks. Now I am interviewing many candidates because I think that in this critical situation cross-advice would be a good idea. Two welcome differences and to have ideological neutrality to reach consensus on more fundamental points”. Asked about Bartomeu’s resignation, he admitted that he had not seen it coming. “It surprised me,” Rousaud admitted. “More than anything else because the day before he said for an hour that he was not going to retire. But without matches, those who would vote would be motivated to get rid of him. He had a lot to lose”. Thinking back to his time at the club before retiring, Rousaud remembered the frustration felt even at board level.

“In the last meeting I attended, Bartomeu was told that we had to cut the players’ salaries by 30 per cent,” he said. “But Bartomeu didn’t listen to us, and we were already fed up by that time, especially considering what happened on social media. He said that what he knew would make him look good. But then he didn’t get through and it caused complete distrust on the part of the players.”