The President of FC Barcelona, Joan Laporta, has countered with sharp words critical comments from Bayern coach Julian Nagelsmann on the purchasing policy of the financially troubled Spanish football club. “Everyone should take care of their own things,” said Laporta on Thursday evening in New York. He said the critical remarks had something to do with “ignorance”, but probably also with concern about the renewed competition. “Barça is back!” Laporta assured journalists.
A week ago, Nagelsmann expressed his astonishment that the club, which owes 1.35 billion euros, was able to strengthen this summer with expensive stars such as world footballer Robert Lewandowski, who had been ripped off by Bayern, or Brazilian Raphinha from Leeds United. “It’s not just Lewy, they’re buying a lot of players – I don’t know how. It’s the only club in the world that has no money but buys any player they want. It’s kind of weird, kind of crazy,” Nagelsmann said.
Laporta explained this without naming Nagelsmann: “It’s ignorance, a lack of information about our club.” The Bayern bosses should “look at their checking accounts, they received significant money from the transfer of Lewandowski. I respect everyone and don’t interfere in other people’s businesses.”
But the club boss also admitted: “It is true that we were practically terminally ill. Thanks to financial leverage, however, we left the hospital. These gentlemen (the critics, ed.) live in the past.”
Not only Nagelsmann, but also Madrid media, which are close to arch-rival Real, had expressed criticism. Laporta suspects that the competition is afraid: “They probably do it because they believe that we will continue to be active in the market and have already overtaken them. Everyone should take care of their own things.”
The club spent over 100 million euros on Raphinha and Lewandowski alone. 50 million euros were also due for central defender Jules Koundé from FC Sevilla. This is possible through a controversial sale of association assets.
In the past few weeks, the Catalans have sold a total of 25 percent of the TV rights for 25 years to the investment company Sixth Street. More than 500 million euros are to flow for this. FC Barcelona also wants to cede a minority stake in Barca Licensing and Merchandising (BLM).