Barcelona to be charged over refereeing scandal: Reports say

9 March, 2023

FC Barcelona have been no stranger to controversies over the years. The Catalan giants have been accused multiple times online for gaining some favourable decisions from the referees for crucial games, although that remains to be an allegation against plenty of other clubs in the European sector. But much to their disappointment, recent events are spotlighting them in the scandal in a pretty bad way. 

Barcelona are allegedly set to be charged with “continuous corruption” over payments made to Jose Maria Enriquez Negreira, the former vice-president of the Technical Committee of Referee. The latest news on the scandalous turn of events comes from El Pais, who report that Prosecutor’s Office is about to charge Barcelona and former president Josep Maria Bartomeu.

Barcelona will be charged with “corruption in business” which the report says could mean jail time for those involved, ragin from six months to four years, as well as a fine. Just a few weeks after the FIFA World Cup 2022 was done, it was confirmed that Jose Maria Negreira had received payments in millions from Bartomeu for undisclosed reasons. 

The Catalans paid a total of €7 million to Negerira in total, although the investigation is focused on the period between 2016 and 2018 when the former ref received €1.4m. This puts added pressure on the club, who have already been facing a severe financial crisis over the last few years. 

Speaking about the scandal, Barcelona’s current president Joan Laporta guaranteed that his club has never gone down the wrong route and they will offer an explanation soon. “We will give a news conference on it soon,” he said. “But Barca have never bought referees nor influence. That was never the intention and that has to be clear. The facts contradict those that are trying to tell a different story.”

As it stands, the club remains adamant to not speak further about the incident and concentrate on what has been a pretty good season for them domestically. Although they were pretty disembarked in the European competitions, they are likely to clinch the La Liga title and are currently the best defensive team in Spain. For more information about sports news and betting go Nextbet