Joan Laporta has been elected president of the legendary Barcelona club under construction

Four months later The resignation of Josep Maria Bartomeu Eleven years after leaving office, Joan Laporta was elected president of FC Barcelona on Sunday (March 7th), and he will have to lead the rebuilding of the club that has lost its place in the scarecrow on the European continent.

A new president, this is what Barcelona lost in a permanent crisis more than a year ago – the date of his last trophy goes back to the La Liga in 2019 – to be reborn and to open a new page in his history, with the first file of his future. His star, Lionel Messi, is at the end of his contract at the end of June.

While permeating the daily life of the illustrious Catalan club Through searches and arrests, like last weekDomestic scandals and sporting disappointments, the return to prominence of Joan Laporta, who was already president of the club between 2003 and 2010, is synonymous with the return of stability.

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Laporta, advertiser, preferred, 58, dominated the ballot with 54.28% of the vote (30,184 votes), ahead of the other candidates: Victor Font (16,679 votes, 29.99%) and Tony Frixa (4,769 votes, 8.58%) according to official Barcelona numbers . The personalities heavily celebrated by Laporta, who sang the Barcelona anthem and jumped into the arms of his relatives, all smiling, before he opened the champagne. He also received congratulations from Font and Freixa.

Messi came to vote first

If for many “socios” (contributors) there remains the person who started the era ‘Greater Barcelona’With Guardiola, Xavi, Iniesta, Messi and twelve titles in his pocket, Laporta finds himself faced with a massive rebuilding project. The first hot file related to Messi’s future. The 33-year-old Argentine, Who wanted to sail last summer before changing his mindNothing has been decided yet … but Officially, he is free to negotiate his departure to another club Since 1is being January. “Pulga” (Chip, in Spanish) came to vote in the ballot box, accompanied by her son Thiago, on Sunday morning, and is a great precedent for the Argentine legend, who has not spoken before during the presidential poll for her club.

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Exactly twenty years ago, Messi started with Barcelona youth. And that he came to vote today means that Leo loves Barcelona. Of all that, we will persuade him to stay. Applause Messi!He fired Laporta during his first speech as president, Sunday evening after midnight.

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The second big project will be economic: with more than 1 billion euros in long-term debt, and 730.6 million euros by the end of June, Laporta will have to negotiate in stages with creditors … and discuss the matter with WC for a possible wage cut.

Other files are piling up: the delay in the renewal of the Camp Nou, which was scheduled to be launched in 2017, but has barely begun; Or the sporting crisis and the blatant lack of results, while Barcelona have won nothing since April 2019 and move to the Paris Saint-Germain stadium on Wednesday the 8th.is being The second leg of the Champions League final, After being badly hit 4-1 in the first leg.

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“In Paris to return!” “

But Laporta starts his new term with a very strong support base. This election generated a strong mobilization, with 55,611 votes recorded (including 20,663 votes by mail) out of 110,290 ballot-age votes (50.42% turnout), and a few hundred votes above the record dating back to the election. In 2010 (57,088 votes cast).

“The high participation surprised me, given the difficulty of moving between provinces. It was not easy [d’organiser cela]And the But we are satisfied with the way things have turned out. “Said, Carles Taskets, is the head of the transitional administration committee responsible for organizing the elections postponed from January to March due to the pandemic.

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The first team players (Sergio Busquets, Riqui Puig) and club legends (Eric Abidal, Carles Puyol, Luis Enrique) also came to vote … and even former president Josep Maria Bartomeu, who was arrested and heard by Justice, then released between Monday and Tuesday in Issue «Barchagate», An alleged slanderous campaign targeting club personalities.

Bartomeu was replaced, and Laporta is now the architect of Barcelona’s revival. He opened his new page on Sunday evening, saying: “We are going to Paris to return!” “

The World with Agence France-Presse

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