“Once the inauguration is formalized, I have the honor to announce the proclamation of Joan Laporta Estruch as president of Barcelona,” said Carles Tusquets, president of the management committee shortly after the inauguration ceremony began. And that was about the bell because Laporta managed to gather against the clock the guarantee of 126.4 million euros -15% of the 828 million of the annual budget- and LaLiga validated it so that he could be invested again as president of Barcelona after having held the position from 2003 to 2010. “It is essential to restore happiness to Barcelona fans and I hope it will be a splendid period. We want to win again and also do well again. We are one of the best clubs in the world and we are recognized and admired for how we play, also for our history. That is why we also have to regain the affection of the people ”, Laporta resolved at the inauguration of the Camp Nou.
The event was attended by former presidents Enric Reyna, Joan Gaspart, Sandro Rosell and Josep Maria Bartomeu, as well as all the coaches and captains of the professional teams of all sections and those of the first soccer team with Messi at the helm. Another positive sign of the involvement of the 10 with the club – he went to vote with his son – and the acceptance with which he receives the arrival of Laporta, now that he must define his contractual future every time he can leave the club free. Although the ceremony was also attended by Pere Aragonés and Teresa Cunillera, vice president and delegate of the Government, as well as Laura Borrás, president of the Parliament. And the new members could not be absent either, such as Eduard Romeu, vice president of Audax Renovables – a company that has given the support to the endorsement – and who will also be for José Elías (he is the president but cannot access the position due to the length of his membership). Thus the list of directors are: Rafael Yuste, Maria Elena Frot, Josep Maria Albert, Xavier Barbany, Miquel Camps, Alfons Castro, Josep Cobells, Antonio Escudero, Juli Guiu, Jordi Llauradó, Josep Ignasi Macià, Aureli Mas, Xavier Puig and Joan Solé, Joan Soler, Ferran Oliver and Ángel Riudalbàs.
The piano notes and the voice of Gemma Humet with A white nub Lluís Llach opened the inauguration, also videos about the race and electoral night, about the past successes with Laporta in charge. That is why he addressed the players. “You are the ones who give joy to millions of Barcelona fans. When I hung the banner in Madrid –Want to see you again– I was also after you. In me you will see a president who will be at your disposal and we are here to take care of you and protect you. With us you will not be alone and we will accompany you on the road to success, “he released, in a clear reference to the feeling of lack of protection demanded by the club’s athletes and with the memory of Piqué’s words about Bartomeu and his lack of decision in the key moments. Although in return he asked them to give their best: “Under the shield the heart beats,” Laporta recalled in a phrase from Joan Gamper, founder of the club.
With a debt of 1,173 million, the club must reformulate itself economically. “It is something that has caused everyone concern. The priority is for the club to be sustainable and that is why we have a crash plan, we know how to do it. We will try to create new sources of income, “agreed Laporta, adding:” It gives us respect, but it does not scare us. In this meeting we are like that, if decisions have to be made that have never been made, then they are made. But we will need to win titles ”.
For soccer, count on Koeman. “Ronald, you already know that you have the confidence of this new board and we are very happy and hopeful that this will continue”, Laporta resolved, always attentive to the roots: “La Masia has to be a guarantee of the sporting and economic viability of the entity, which has the Barça seal ”. But, like this, like someone who did not want it, he also left his mark: “I will try to convince Messi to stay, I will do everything I can. And what he does will be fine. Sorry Leo, you are the best player in history and Barça loves you very much ”. The 10 nodded and laughed under the mask, between uncomfortable and flattered.
In any case, there was no press conference or question time because that will be next week. Laporta began the event with a phrase from Johan Cruyff, his friend and guru. “A phrase from Johan came to mind. Only God knows what it took to get here, “he said. An hour and a half later, he closed the ceremony remembering his father, as he was moved to remember that in 2003, after being invested, he saw his father with tears in his eyes. “It was the first time, I had never seen it,” he acknowledged. Now he is the president again. And so ended the last of the acts of the candidacy of Joan Laporta Estruch and the first of Laporta II of Barcelona.