False Transparency and Barça: Thoughts on a Presidency [Updated]

Tomorrow we play Real Sociedad. They’re a good squad and I’m happy to have them back in La Liga. But I’ve got other things to write about that are more important than any single league match. We’ve been talking about it for a while now and I’m sorry if you’re sick of it, but we shouldn’t let it slide, even if we’re about to take on the 6th place team (while RM are taking on the last placed team).

I first started following this club because I fell in love with their style of play, their history, and the fact that they were fan-owned and fan controlled. Later, my ties were only further entrenched by the UNICEF shirt deal, which spoke to the club’s absolute commitment to the causes of solidarity and civic duty. I loved it and didn’t think twice about the way it went down. I started blogging about the team shortly afterwards and it never crossed my mind to consider discussing the process through which these decisions were made.

Fast forward to this past summer, then. I’ve become a much more well-rounded fan, writer, and indeed member of the club. I was on the fence and leaning more towards no confidence in the vote against Laporta–especially after he showed massive disdain for the fans  and members in that summer’s NYC tour–and much of what he’s accused of by the new administration is damnable activity, indeed. But the transgressions of the past are no excuse for the transgressions of the present.

Sandro Rosell’s campaign was, in large part, about being anti-Laporta and yet also pro Catalan. In this vein he took to the air on RadioMarca and denounced African players as, in essence if not in these exact words, others who were typically attempting to lie and cheat their way into Barça’s academy. Foreigners, he suggested, were taking places from “our boys”. A throwaway line, probably but the man interviewing him, Santiago Segurola, pointed out that Rosell makes no negative claims about players coming from, say Argentina, just those from Africa and Asia. Quintessential “others.”

When he was elected, Rosell immediately attacked Laporta, accusing him of misuse of funds and asking the General Assembly to hold Laporta personally accountable for debts accrued during his tenure. When the vote came up, Rosell abstained from voting, hiding behind a wall of his board members rather than owning his own recommendation. A full accounting of the books was promised for Nov 2 because, unlike the previous administration, transparency was important to this one. Member involvement was important. Instead of a true accounting and a clear look at the Deloitte accounts drawn up to counter Laporta’s own numbers, no more information than was previously released by the club–that is, merely total numbers and grandiose claims with no proof–was published at the members office and was only viewable by those who showed up in person.

Laporta made Johan Cruyff an Honorary President and Rosell immediately said that it was unjust, that it wasn’t an official position that Laporta had the power to create, nominate, and confirm. Sandro claimed that the members needed to vote on this important matter. And then he changed the membership requirements to xenophobic and exclusive levels. Without putting it up for a vote. And most recently he  made the unilateral decision to add a sponsor to the shirt, again without putting it up for a vote. Only important matters, like honorary presidencies should be voted on by the real owners of the club, of course.

I don’t have a fully formed opinion on Qatar Foundation yet or where I stand on the question of the shirt front. In a lot of ways, it doesn’t matter  to me whether we have a “clean” shirt front or not–I like UNICEF and want to keep supporting these non profits and part of that includes using our shirt front. I don’t want a corporate sponsor on there, though it should be pointed out that we already have one: Nike. Ever noticed the swoosh?  The shirt front isn’t “clean” right now and hasn’t been for decades. As has been pointed out, we’ve sold our shirt front before and no one seems to be worried about our souls for that, so some of the holier-than-thou attitude is a bit much. If QF is a decent organization that stands for what it claims to, then I’m not sure what the difference is, morally, to having their symbol instead of UNICEF’s, especially if we get to keep both.

The problem is the process. The problem is the claim of transparency and then the utter lack of it. A surprise announcement that we’ve made a deal with a foundation in Qatar, a place with human rights problems (though I challenge anyone to find me a country without human rights abuses of some kind–my own country, a self styled bastion of rights for all, has plenty), is not transparency. It is not the democracy we claim to have. What’s the point of being a member if you don’t have a say? And these questions about QF aren’t merely reactions to an Arab foundation, but instead any foundation. We, as members, should have our questions answered on something this important and we should have them answer in an open and transparent forum. And then we should decide for ourselves whether we want this or not.

The club must accept its role as a global organization, with members around the world (despite the restrictions, we’re still here, Sandro), and accept not just the technology involved in worldwide votes–we can securely purchase tickets online, so we already have the system in place–but the willingness to use it. I want to vote from New York on referendums and I want to have a say in my club’s future. That includes shirt sponsorships and yes, honorary presidents too.

I will remain a member of this club because, as Kevin says, I want to be around to vote down Rosell’s chosen successor. But it’s more than that, too. It’s because I know that this is a blip in the club’s history. FC Barcelona will outlive Sandro Rosell. It will outlive us all. It is a bigger organization than any of us and we should remember that. And then we should demand accountability from the preening politicians talking about just that in their campaigns and press releases.

So then Real Sociedad, briefly: Jeffren and Milito are the only absences and Milito did do some warm ups with the rest of the squad in practice today. That’s good news. Bojan appears fully fit after his face-to-hip study of impact force (I hope he gets an A in his Science Fair project), but regardless, we should be able to field our best squad. Keita needs some time on the field, though, so I hope to see him get some minutes.

Sociedad is better at home, having beaten both Villarreal and Espanyol there. They have yet to play any of the other top 6 away yet (they lost RM at home in a match they should have won comfortably), but against other competition they’re 2-1-4 (10GF, 13GA) and haven’t beaten anyone higher than 17th. They have also never held a clean sheet away. At home, they’ve done so 5 times, but that won’t help them in the Camp Nou.

Official Prediction: 3-0, goals by Messi (2) and Villa.

Game is at 3pmEST, 9pm local, check your local time here.

UPDATE: here’s this week’s La Liga Weekly Podcast:

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Recent Posts

Written by:

Isaiah is a co-founder and lead writer for Barcelona Football Blog. He currently lives in Germany with his wife and daughter.

130 Comments

  1. Extreme barca fan
    December 11, 2010

    Its unfortunate that this great period of sporting success is synonymous with the presidency of ro-SELL.
    A lot of people might forgive him all his evil doings if we keep on performing like we do right now, but not me, for me the Shirt Sponsorship Sucks (that’s a SSS)
    .
    .
    .
    .
    official prediction 4-0 (somehow this is not as fun a before)

  2. December 11, 2010

    great piece, thanks for sharing your thoughts, I agree with you about the way in which this important decision wasmade,it’s really sad that suchimportant case was only announced to members.

    But I still love this club and will support values (?) it represents.

  3. Diego S.
    December 11, 2010

    Quick Points :

    – I’m sad we’re using a sponsor.
    – It makes me feel a little better that it’s a Charity Foundation.
    – Rosell started bad with the Chygy sale and then was winning us over with some good things (taking the blame for Airplane to Osasuna, etc)
    then he did this.
    – Mes Que Un Club was never about the shirt front and never will be.
    – Some of us are maybe worried because of the Shirt Design. (Where will we put the Giant Tree?)

    Official Prediction 5-0 Messi(2) Pedro Villa and someone else.

    • karim
      December 11, 2010

      thank you for pointing this out.everyone was saying :now we are not mes que un club. we are like all others as if this motto was only talking about shirt sponsors.mes que un club has a lot more meaning than a lousy sponsorship deal

    • IS
      December 12, 2010

      “Rosell started bad with the Chygy sale” – Just the Chyggy sale???

      Can we add the following to the list:
      – Revoking Cruyff’s honorary title (and not taking that matter to any assembly/voting forum for discussion as promised)
      – Shutting Barca’s doors to the outside world (as I was on the verge of becoming a socio)
      – The masterclass negotiations (and leaks) during Ibragate
      – And of course, being a conniving, cowardly pr*ck

      SandruSELLco has a long way to winning me over…

  4. Kxevin
    December 11, 2010

    Watching PSV right now, and I have to say that Afellay is some pretty serious talent. From the left, he smoked a defender abd spanked a shot from an angle at distance, that hit the crossbar. Then from the center, he took and spanked, again from distance, almosr beating the keeper and forcing a rebound that I can just see Messi pouncing on.

    Then as I type this he did a Ronaldinhoesque sitting on the pitch whining about a foul as the other team scurried off to the other end. So that wasn’t so good.

    • vicsoc8
      December 11, 2010

      I’m watching the game as well. The most important thing I noticed is the length of time he holds the ball. When he gets here he is going to have to move the ball a lot quicker.

      I think the bedding in period is going to be a lot longer than people expect.

    • soccermomof4
      December 11, 2010

      That whining thing would only be allowed to happen once. I think Pep would cure this type of thing quickly.

  5. jhargrid
    December 11, 2010

    I agree with the sentiments. I’m not so offended that the shirt will have another logo, or that the club will be picking up 30m Euros a year from it. But it bothers the hell out of me that the leadership circumvented the democratic procedures on what seems to be a fairly generous interpretation of a vote in 2003.

  6. sab
    December 11, 2010

    didnt the socis know about this sponsorship?that prick talked bout this in his election campaign.nd still he won by a landslide.so may be they r happy with this.
    My regret is that we got only 30m pa instead of 50m pa.
    Many r saying pep is also involed.FYI,pep was the ambassador of qatar2022 b4 this prick was selected.
    Human rights.most of the people here knew little about the different culture,races,beliefs of asia,africa IMO.human rights is more bout gay rights(as far as i knw even in the usa,there r some states whr it is illegal).human rights in arab countries r generally poor.instead of citing those many cited the gay humaon rights.can u guys tell me wht percentage ppl r gay in the wrld?
    Freedom of speech,look @wikileaks nd assanje.think bout usa drone attacks,iraq invasion.
    Sorry if i offended any1.when u talk bout rights 1st look at ur own country human r8 index.
    So QF who is owned by the royal family 1should nt look down upon them for this.our beloved laporta tied us with budoyonkor who is sponsored by uzbek dictators.
    All that being said i just want to slay ro sell.in this age of capitalism,money is everything,but 111 yrs of honour should not be violated like this.cause lieutentant. WORF OF STARSHIP said HONOUR IS EVERYTHING and i still blv that.
    In another note,pique will nt plax against la real.and the tweets of barca players r like those who r on da verge of puberty.freaking horrible and so shallow.
    4 0.messi 2.villa 2

    • PM
      December 11, 2010

      @Sab,
      1. Human rights is not only about gay people. It’s about the rights one should have just for being human.
      2. Being your fellow countryman I understand why you are being homophobic. It’s a taboo in our religious culture. But, please try to understand that nobody deserves to be treated badly for their sexual orientation or choices.

      @Others,
      I’m sorry about the comment made above. It is difficult for our society to be rational and humane in this regard. But I’m sure it’s gonna happen given some time and better education.

      • sab
        December 12, 2010

        @PM,human rights is nt only bout gay people.its about the rights one should have just for being human.agree completely.thats what i say in my comment.many here overlooked other human rights just citing their abuse,as if it is the only criteria but that it is not.sorry if i offend any gay ppl.
        Now a days i can tolerate them,but cant say that cause of the social taboo.in a country where most of the ppl barely meets the basic needs,gay rights concern is not a significant concern.
        @others.its my view on my country bout this issue

      • outerspacedout
        December 12, 2010

        PM: I think what he was pointing out was that ripping on Qatar for solely lack of homosexual rights in a holier-than-thou way as being any worse than Laporta tying us with Uzbek dictators or even American human rights violations. Or how ripping on Qatar for lack of freedom of speech is hypocritical seeing stuff like Wikileaks with Julian Assange or pretty much the kind of pressure on people criticizing certain things here or there even in the US, like how the military stuff is supposed to be a democratic process but even with the parliament deciding DADA should be repealed the military is still keeping it as of now.

        As in from what I saw in the comment sab was merely pointing out how human rights issues existed all over the world and that using ‘these people don’t follow human rights I don’t like them’ to brand a whole people or country is hypocritical and dickish.

        That’s what I got from the comment above yours anyway.

        Sab is Indian btw right?

    • Kxevin
      December 11, 2010

      Well, it doesn’t have a chicken. But yes, pretty much everything else.

    • csidle
      December 12, 2010

      If you want to be taken even slightly seriously, try and spell words out. Because holy shit.

  7. rivnam
    December 11, 2010

    Guys, the dutch league is inferoir to other leagues and a star in a “lower” league will just become another player in a good team….

    but i agree that he is a very talented player and i am sure he will be brillaint for barca

    • December 11, 2010

      Good point, rivnam. It’s why when I discuss Afellay, I can only talk about the talent that I see: pace, first touch and shot. His ability to get by defenders has also been proven at the World Cup.

      All the rest of that stuff will just have to wait, and not long, as he will be presented around Christmastime.

  8. Kari
    December 11, 2010

    Agree completely with this post.

    Diego’s point that mes que un club has nothing to do with the front of the shirt and never will is important. Why? Because now that I’ve actually gone through my daily rounds of football websites (that I didn’t do yesterday), there were a lot of “solo un club” comments.

    Us Barca fans understand the historically significance of the phrase ‘mes que un club’ but there are a lot of other people who, in their bastion of self-importance, believe it’s a phrase of moral superiority over them and their clubs.

    Newsflash: Barca is more than a club; it’s a symbol of Catalan culture and Catalanism. I sincerely doubt you or your teams were taken into account when the phrase was made.

    Oh, and you don’t have to be Catalan or Spanish to sympathize with the cause. What kind of BS is that? It’s like the whole ‘you’re not a fan because you don’t go to the games live’ argument trolls were spouting when they came here last summer.

    -Official prediction: A win. Messi and Pedro! score. Iniesta hits the post. 😀

    • Diego S.
      December 11, 2010

      *Adding something to your Official Prediction : Bojan gets outmuscled and falls but he looks cute.

      **My point of Mes Que un Club, I think the phrase got started during the Franco days where Catalans only could speak Catalan inside the Camp Nou, It’s also more than a club because it’s a little into the politics of Spain as the front and representative of a nation/people who want to be their own Country and don’t feel Spanish.

  9. Jnice
    December 11, 2010

    About the game…. as always, I’m cautious. La Real can ball regardless of their away form, so I hope we don’t take them lightly.

    • Diego S.
      December 11, 2010

      You’re always cautious Jnice. That’s why you don’t win anymore at Barcastuff :p

      Seriously, I wish you well.

      • Jnice
        December 11, 2010

        But I have 5 points in that quiz game!

        I have to be cautious, I can’t predict 4-0 score lines. It’s not in my nature.

        • Eklavya
          December 11, 2010

          Hahahaha! 😀
          The quiz is easy. If only I knew when he’d ask the questions…

  10. Kari
    December 11, 2010

    Is it just me or does Ezequiel Lavezzi look like Jimmy Fallon? They could be long lost brothers or something.

    • Diego S.
      December 11, 2010

      And Jorge Fucile of Uruguay and Porto looks like Justin Long.

  11. Diego S.
    December 11, 2010

    Kari !!!

    Can you please enlighten me and explain to me the whole Canadian/French Canadian thing ?

    **In Order to migrate from Egypt to Canada you have to pass an English and a French Test.
    **Btw, Love the 5 Dollar Bill with Colors and the Hockey Players 😀

    • Kari
      December 11, 2010

      Whoa! From Egypt to Canada? Can your body handle the temperature change?! 😀

      –As s nerd who got 95% in Canadian History, you’ll have to be specific as to what you want to know about Canadians and French-Canadians.

      A short explanation is that England and France both came to Canada to take over the country. England eventually beat France, so the majority of the country speak English. However, France did get its own province–Quebec.

      Similar to Catalonia, Quebec wants to separate from Canada and almost did in 1995 (although in all honesty, it’s never going to happen.)As you can imagine, the people who live in Quebec are big on their language. If you speak English there, they’ll give you dirty looks and even pretend to not understand you (Montreal is different and not as extreme)

      The French they speak, by the way, isn’t real French. I have a cousin from Geneva that’s studying English here, and when she came, she didn’t understand the majority of the French speakers.

      Since I live in the capital of the country (Ottawa), everything is bilingual. Everyone speaks English, but if you want a high paying job here, it’s a huge advantage to know French, but not that important.

      For the English test, know the provinces/territories and their capital city. Ontario will have two things because the capital city (Ottawa) is also there along with Toronto (provincial capital)

      If all you have to do is pass an French test, learn your grammar. That’s where the majority of the marks are. There will probably be an oral test and a comprehension test (where they’ll play a tape and you have to understand what they say. It’s really easy though.)

      The bills have the Queen of England and Former Prime Ministers, but they are quite colorful. 😉

      So that was just my short explanation. 😀

      • Diego S.
        December 11, 2010

        We have relatives there. They look like they’re wearing their closet and everything is covered in snow. 😀

        Our 5 Pound bill have a Pharaoh milking an Ox (you read that right).

      • Eklavya
        December 11, 2010

        “I have a cousin from Geneva that’s studying English here, and when she came, she didn’t understand the majority of the French speakers.”

        Thanks for that perspective!

      • Lou
        December 11, 2010

        Yeah, I’m now at an American scientific base in Antarctica right now where they use US dollars and it’s kind of annoying not to be able to see how much money you have at a glance because it is all the same color.

        Also, with regards to French in Canada, I lived in New Brunswick for a few months (a bilingual province on the East Coast), and even my Quebecois friends had trouble understanding the French spoken there.

        • blitzen
          December 11, 2010

          You are in Antarctica? Awesome! What do you do there?

          • Eklavya
            December 12, 2010

            I always dreamed of being there sometime!

  12. Liva
    December 11, 2010

    I don’t comment that much here, but I follow the site carefully, and have always appreciated the wonderful discussions that take place here. This time I wanted to add my opinion as well.

    It is exactly that enormous hypocrisy of Rosell that makes the whole sponsorship deal so disappointing. Now, I am just a regular fan, I am not a member of the club, and I only started following Barca in spring/summer of 2008, after they remained in the 3rd place in La Liga (for a rather strange reason, actually – I don’t know why, but I felt sorry for the players and the huge mess that was going on in the club, so I decided to cheer for them), therefore I am probably that kind of fan of whom Rosell couldn’t care less. Anyway, very quickly I got incredibly fascinated not only by the way the team played football, but also by the club’s history, principles and values. The fact that instead of advertising some huge company on their shirts, they had Unicef on them and they were actually paying the organization for the rights to do so, was one of the most incredible things about the club.

    I am not really that bothered about the Qatar Foundation being the shirt sponsor (I think that if you really want to, you can find faults with any country on this planet, and at least they are not a betting company or something like that); it is the way it all was arranged that is so frustrating. If the members had been given a chance to vote and had made the same decision – fine, I still wouldn’t be a fan of the idea, but that is how democracy works, majority rules. Instead Rosell is acting like a little dictator. He has been going around criticizing Laporta at any opportunity, making it seem like Laporta was the incarnation of the devil himself (accountants are probably one of the most creative people in the world, I am sure the finances weren’t as bad as Rosell said, but nor do I believe the situation was as rosy as Laporta painted it – as usual in such cases, the truth must be somewhere in the middle). Yet, at the same time, Rosell has no problem whatsoever to use a change in statutes introduced by Laporta to make such a serious decision like shirt sponsorship. He screams that Cruyff’s honorary presidency should have been voted on by the members, but at the same time restricts membership and finds shirt sponsors without any consultation with the members. Rosell did not even attend the press conference where the sponsorship was announced – a very cowardly thing to do, in my opinion.

    One of the most bizarre things that I have heard since the announcement, is that some belive that the sponsor thing is temporary, when the club’s finances will be better, the club will be able to get rid of the shirt sponsor. I don’t want to sound disrespectful, but that is a little bit delusional. Is there really any chance that at some moment in the future the president-at-the-time will just say: “Ok, thanks guys, but I think we’re good, keep your 30m!” Which is the magic border that needs to be reached, so that you can consider the club’s financial state good enough to turn down 30m that have been a part of the budget for the last years? And I don’t think that the collaboration with the QF will be a very lengthy one – once they decide to stop sponsoring the club, what kind of company will take its place? (One interesting question, though, about the QF is – would this deal be taking place if Qatar had not been given chance to host the WC in 2022?)

    Overall, Rosell has put a price tag on something that was until now invaluable. And it will be a price tag that will be very hard to rip off. People here, in my country, often say something like “I love my land, but I hate my country.” (I don’t know if there is a saying like that in English, so I hope it makes sense translated) Something similar probably might be applied to Barca now by many of its fans.

    But, anyway, good luck to Barca tomorrow! This whole mess about the shirts definitely will not make me care less about the team.

    • Kari
      December 11, 2010

      “One of the most bizarre things that I have heard since the announcement, is that some belive that the sponsor thing is temporary, when the club’s finances will be better, the club will be able to get rid of the shirt sponsor”

      Yeah, there are a fair amount of people who believe that. We have a 6-year contract, which I just remember means it’s the duration of RoSELL’s tenure as president. Will there be a shirt sponsor after QF? Good question. But RoSELL has already paved an avenue for subsequent presidents. Damn him!

      • PM
        December 11, 2010

        Around 60% people (probably representative of those who can vote) are ok with shirt sponsoring. I don’t see any candidate making it an election issue. And, it’s probably not easy for them to let go of $30m a year. I just hope the designers don’t put that ugly tree anywhere near the shirt.

      • December 11, 2010

        And that will not happen. Laporta was exploring the matter during his tenure, the wedge that RoSELL used to back-door this bit of onerousness. Unfortunately, I can’t see it going away. I suspect that when Javier Faus says that they will “explore” the matter in future assemblies, he sure as hell doesn’t mean during this presidency.

        My dark little heart is torn, because I want the best for our club, even as I know that another string of sporting successes will pave the way for Alan Harper’s successor. (Shudder!)

    • Eklavya
      December 11, 2010

      “I love my land, but I hate my country.”
      That makes sense for me. Good comment to read 🙂

  13. Liva
    December 11, 2010

    Wow, I had hoped that my comment would look a little more readable, sorry about that. 🙁

    • Kari
      December 11, 2010

      No worries! Have you seen the comment I just posted, Liva? 😀

      Welcome and feel free to contribute any time!

      • Liva
        December 11, 2010

        Well, your comment had paragraphs. Soooo much easier to read that way. 😀

        Thanks for the welcome. 🙂

        • December 11, 2010

          You were but a few thwacks of the “enter” key away from full paragraph-ness, Liva. Your friendly neighborhood moderator has applied them.

          And double welcome.

          • Liva
            December 11, 2010

            Thank you and thank you! (for the paragraphs and for the welcome) 🙂

  14. Vj
    December 11, 2010

    Ugh, Pique sounds like a schoolgirl with all the goal updates on his twitter..

    BTW what happened to Sevilla all of a sudden? All the players seem so disinterested in winning.. And then they want to know why Ibi didn’t go there..

    • Diego S.
      December 11, 2010

      They went from Juande Ramos to Manolo Jiménez to Antonio Álvarez
      to Gregorio Manzano.

    • Kari
      December 11, 2010

      What do you mean, a school girl? Oooooooohhhhhhhhh, nevermind, I get it. 😀

      Pablo Piatti scored twice. I watched him play in ’07. He’s so small and cute 😀

      Kanoute missed a penalty and I guess they just had “one of those days”. Doesn’t look like The Manzano Effect is working for them though.

      • Eklavya
        December 11, 2010

        “What do you mean, a school girl? Oooooooohhhhhhhhh, nevermind, I get it. “
        LOL 😀

    • Helge
      December 11, 2010

      Fifth loss in a row, and I thought Manzano would lead them back to being a top club in Spain. Incredible downfall!

      I’m not a Sevilla fan, but during the last seasons, they at least gave Real Madrid a fight – next weekend, I highly doubt it 🙁

  15. Jeff
    December 11, 2010

    Soon there won’t be a need for Banquillos by Isaiah….Pique and Puyol are making them happen in real life.

    IT’S TIME FOR BOJAN TO GET A TWITTER ACCOUNT!

    Tweet Bojangles_CT: OMG @3gerardpique and @carles5puyol just gave me a swirlie!!!! Ooooooooooooooh!!!!

  16. Eklavya
    December 11, 2010

    Sevilla lost 3-1 to Almeria?! WTF?!

  17. Eklavya
    December 11, 2010

    And: “Carlos Tevez has handed in a transfer request at Manchester City, full story in News of the World.”

    WTF?! (x2)

    • Kari
      December 11, 2010

      News of the World is a tabloid = dirty liars = so what else is new.

      I wouldn’t put much value in what they say.

      • Jnice
        December 11, 2010

        Though a lot of the British journalists are cosigning. Pathetic from Tevez if true, IMO.

        • Eklavya
          December 11, 2010

          I don’t think the actuall news is false…its spreading out.

          I don’t what his problem is though. “Unhappy” with life and all thatstuff…weird.

  18. beeeef
    December 11, 2010

    this is for all you FIFA 11 players out there, but is anyone else having problems with micro-pausing, game crashes, matches won’t load, etc [ps3]?

    a quick look at the EA forums confirms that this problem is not just limited to ps3 users, but xbox owners as well.

    it’s kind of stunning that EA would release a game that’s so shambolic! i mean, i’ve encountered games with their fair share of bugs before, but this takes the cake! load up Career mode and before long you can’t even play!

    a real shame because it’s about as close to a real life simulation-game as i’ve ever played. i guess ill be going back to PES again next year.

    • Eklavya
      December 11, 2010

      What? Please elaborate on the details of the bug.
      I dont own it but Im a gamer…

      • beeeef
        December 11, 2010

        -the game will stay on the warmup menu (when it’s just the one player and the GK) and never load the game.

        -it’ll freeze in-game repeatedly.

        -when i look at players on my roster instead of the name, for example, “Victor Valdes” at the GK position, it’ll be “2324183593” or some variance of a very large number. subsequently the match will not load, etc,etc

        i’ve found that if i don’t play career mode, i can (so far) avoid having to clear all my saved data, by sticking to exhibition games and tournaments. I hadn’t played the game much since I bought it, so I’ve just discovered these issues. Apparently I’m only one of many purchasers of the game with similar problems. maybe it’s a sign that I should just stick to watching Barca on TV, haha.

        • Eklavya
          December 11, 2010

          Wow! Some of them are pretty funny when you read them as a comment though hahaha!

  19. Lou
    December 11, 2010

    From barcastuff:

    Spokesperson Qatar Sports Investments: “We nominated Qatar Foundation to have a brand presence on the front of FC Barcelona’s jersey.” [qna]

    Qatar Sports Investments says the shirt deal is between them and Barcelona but that they allow Qatar Foundation to appear on the shirt [qna]

  20. Vj
    December 11, 2010

    It seems that Zokora and Romaric were more interested in sneaking out to the nearest club than playing against us, so no wonder they’re headed downhill..

    ||http://fourfourtwo.com/blogs/laligaloca/archive/2010/12/10/the-curfew-busting-foreskin-tearing-la-liga-preview.aspx

    Scroll down to the preview for the Athletic – Espanyol game and you’ll the weirdest injury ever..

  21. Vj
    December 11, 2010

    Hmm, how come my comment went under moderation? I applied || before the hyperlink..

    • Eklavya
      December 11, 2010

      I thought you dont need the “||” s if you’re hyperlinking it normally.

  22. Helge
    December 11, 2010

    Carlitos just handed in a transfer request at Eastlands!!!
    I just hope he doesn’t join the EE – I love Tevez, but obviously hate that club!

  23. Soy Culé
    December 11, 2010

    To me, RoSELL, as you guys call him, seems like he’s trying way too hard to “catalanize” the club. He established a ridiculous membership rule, which hurt me as an American, because it’s like he’s telling me that I can buy their shirts and cheer for their goals, but I’m not good enough to be an actual member.

    Now, as stated in the article, he also has this “thing” about how foreigners are taking the spots of Catalan players in the cantera. I really hope he isn’t contemplating taking action over his ‘feelings’ because that would probably mean some very talented youngsters who aren’t Catalan will be told to “f off” after having been told they would get a chance to play at the best club in the world.

    I get that he’s just trying to be patriotic (and erase everything Laporta did at the club), but it’s infuriating because, to a lot of people, it makes not only the club, but the Catalan culture look xenophobic. And I know, as well as every other Barça fan knows, that could not be further from the truth.

    Plus he’s divided the club’s support, too. There are a lot of people who like his ideas, and a lot of people who don’t like his ideas. Before Laporta left the office, I don’t think the fans could have been closer. Everything was perfect (it still is, on the sporting side). But now, there’s a wedge that divides us as being either pro-RoSELL or anti-RoSELL.

    So, in essence, he seems more like a snake than a president…

  24. Kari
    December 11, 2010

    Guardiola: “1/8 finals of the Champions League? I’d like to avoid the French teams, they’re very strong, I don’t like them. [barcastuff]

    Reverse psychology? Or maybe he doesn’t want us to be complacent?

    • mei
      December 11, 2010

      Guarding against complacancy would be my bet.
      The other teams pose much of a threat to put us on alert if we draw against them , the french teams mostly dont and could lead our players thinking hmm okay these two matches and who’s next?

  25. soccermomof4
    December 11, 2010

    @Kari ON A LIGHTER NOTE
    I think it was you that said you wanted your room “blaugranafied” too when I described my Christmas decorating efforts. Be careful what you wish for. The red set of lights stopped working (silly cheap Walmart lights) and that left me temporarily with only blue. Husband walks in, sees the blue lights and says, “oh good, you’re finally supporting Chelsea.” UHG!

    • Kari
      December 11, 2010

      That’s why I’d get lava lamps!

  26. barca96
    December 11, 2010

    This is totally off-topic.

    I downloaded the Barca-Real Madrid match in HD.
    So after hooking my laptop to my HD tv via the Blue 15pin cable,
    the match stutters. WHy is that? The quality is good though, very HD-like but it’s just that it stutters.
    Am I using the wrong way to connect to the tv or what?

    Many thanks in advance

    • Robert
      December 11, 2010

      Does it run ok when just playing on the laptop?
      Does any other video stutter when connected to your tv?
      Make sure there’s nothing running on your laptop.

      • beeeef
        December 11, 2010

        ^

        i think this is your answer.

        i never have any visual lag when i hook my mac up to the tv since i started using hdmi.

        google around a bit though. someone has probably asked that same exact question on a tech board somewhere and gotten an answer.

        • barca96
          December 11, 2010

          Thanks guys.
          I think it’s because Im not using HDMI cable.
          Yes, it does run smoothly on laptop or PC.
          HDMI cables in Australia cost nearly twice as much than what I could get back home. I guess I’ll just wait.

          Thanks guys.

  27. Kari
    December 11, 2010

    allas11 got his YouTube account taken down (For the record, I DIDN’T bookmark hi–oh wait (checks bookmarks), nevermind.).

    But have no fear! He returns as allas14 ! Yesh!

    • barca96
      December 11, 2010

      Haha can’t stop him.
      Hopefully he will upload al his previous videos.
      Or better, just upload them on MU or RS.

    • Miguel
      December 11, 2010

      this one’s pretty good:
      *http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zzADa7KakCw&feature=player_profilepage

  28. gow
    December 11, 2010

    hey guys
    i finally saw the news today about the qatar shirt sponsership thingy..
    i feel awkward about it…it is a good thing to do for the financial sides of the club, yet the morals and values of this club feel as though they have went down because of Mr.Rosell. When the unicef deal was announced, i was one of the proudest fan in the world, knowing that my team, scratch that, OUR team, in all the shit that we might have been going through, still values it’s most important moral” MES QUE UN CLUB”. And now it pains me, and probably most of the fans, that we have broken a 111 tradition, a tradition that maybe might not have made us the most successful team ON the pitch, but it made us the most successful team OFF the pitch..
    Honestly, i dont know wether i should trust rosell or not, im just going to give the man some time, see what he can do, I think he has already damaged the image of the club a bit by bit, starting with the mebership fiasco to this sponsor thing, but im going to trust in him because he was picked by the members, and i share the same trust as my fellow fans…
    and sorry for the mistakes, and if i dont make sense, im feeling really wierd, and im sorry if i repeated anything that anyone else said, i didnt read the comments, i just wanted to share my opinion…
    and for tomorrow’s game, imma go for a 2-0 win, messi and villa…
    chears guys:S

  29. simple_barcafan
    December 11, 2010

    “FC Barcelona will outlive Sandro Rosell. It will outlive us all. It is a bigger organization than any of us and we should remember that.”
    very true…a club with a 111 year history isnt going to be bought down by one man…nay..not even by a board elected for 6 years..

  30. blitzen
    December 11, 2010

    “The problem is the process. The problem is the claim of transparency and then the utter lack of it.”

    This sums up Isaiah’s entire post and perfectly captures my feelings on Rosell and this whole situation. For a club that is owned by its members, they are awfully smoke-and-mirrors about the decision-making process. I have been wanting to believe that for all his flaws Rosell has ultimately had the best interests of the club at heart, but it could not be clearer that he is on his own personal power trip and determined to ram through his ideas no matter the fallout. Selling the shirt may in fact be good for the club in the short term, in purely financial terms, but the way he has gone about it speaks volumes about this man and his methods.

    Visca Barca…I hope.

  31. Miguel
    December 11, 2010

    look what el niño dios is buying me for x-mas!:

    *http://www.worldsoccershop.com/382369-nv.html

    &

    *http://www.worldsoccershop.com/12115-wh.html

    i usually rock training/warm-up tops to avoid looking like a race-car driver w/all those corporate logos. looks like i’m gonna remain doing so for the foreseeable future, too.

  32. Euler
    December 11, 2010

    Via barcastuff – Sport is reporting that the club is willing to let JDS leave on a loan during the January transfer window. It’s Sport so who knows, but this isn’t the usual kind of high profile story they like to run with and embellish.

    Don’t know what it is, but it seems like something is going on with JDS’s development. It’s a bit unclear how Pep and the club view his role in the future of the team.

    Letting him leave on a loan is particularly odd given that JDS now has the opportunity to play against second division competition. But I don’t think he’s been playing consistently even for the B team so far this season.

    Watching him play, he seems to need more development inside the Barca system. Letting him leave wouldn’t let him work on the issues he needs to.

    If this is true it makes his future very unclear.

    • Miguel
      December 11, 2010

      it’s the last line in the story in which they say ferrer, the manager of vittesse, asked for the availability of thiago for a loan.

      *http://www.sport.es/default.asp?idpublicacio_PK=44&idioma=CAS&idnoticia_PK=732417&idseccio_PK=803&h=

      not sure what inside info sport has on transfers, if any.

      i don’t think he played badly in the game against rubin kazan. he got a nice pat on the back from pep after his display. he’ll be in the same situation as thiago is next season in that he’ll have to be promoted or lost on a free transfer. we’ll see what pep’s plans are for him then.

    • Miguel
      December 11, 2010

      i didn’t see his performance in the copa match was it? in which people said he had an off game. only saw the highlight of his goal. he’s back in the squad list along w/miño, fontàs, bartra, & vázquez for the game vs albacete tomorrow. hopefully he gets some minutes then.
      *http://www.fcbarcelona.com/web/castellano/noticies/futbol_b/temporada10-11/12/11/n101211114522.html

  33. Stephen
    December 11, 2010

    Sponsorship: I think as Barça fans we’ve been ‘spoiled’ in that regard, to a point where we are so different, we almost look ‘snobby’ or ‘delicate’ compared to other clubs who WISH they had a sponsor at all, I think teams suffer monetarily way more than Barça which prevents them from even having good players, raising players, or even ‘borrowing’ them. Im a cule forever, but I also support La Liga, and i think we’re being a little melodramatic about the entire thing. It really could’ve been worse, Rosell was voted in by the people, I’m sure if this issue had been voted by the assembly, the outcome would’ve been the same. I understand its our philosophy, but as someone mentioned above, we are still mes que un club, I think having “solidarity and civic duty” can be done without wearing the shirt. and Democracy? I think politics everywhere and anywhere say its voters have no say in things, its the truth, it sucks but it does. Also like my Government professor used to tell us all the time, ‘the more things change, the more things stay the same.’
    La real sociedad: Excited about this team !! I was a little kid last time they were in primera, I’m excited for this one, 3-1 my prediction !

  34. blitzen
    December 12, 2010

    I have admittedly been a bit out of touch for the last couple of weeks, but I don’t believe this has been posted. It is David Villa’s interview after the Clasico, with translation:

    *http://community.livejournal.com/_fcbarcelona_/228972.html#cutid1

    ***CAUTION! FANGIRLS!

  35. blitzen
    December 12, 2010

    Redknapp (Tottenham): “Any little lads who get told they’re too small, watch the video of the clasico and you’ll see you’re never too small”

    😀 😀 😀

  36. simple_barcafan
    December 12, 2010

    i miss pep’s blog…Does anyone know if he has started a new one or it is just barcastuff he is managing?

  37. Jnice
    December 12, 2010

    I wonder if Pep will actually rest Pique for the Espanyol match since he’s on 4 yellows. I hope not/

  38. K(legit)
    December 12, 2010

    So the true nature of this convoluted dirty, filthy deal finally comes out in the light eh?!
    I won’t be surprised if even this QSI is a front.

    On the other hand, the shirt is now the most expensive one in the world right now..hmm..how much of this ‘new money’ goes into the ‘Get Cesc to Barça’ money-chest

    Sport says JDS will go out on loan in January..I am conflicted on this at the moment. He seems to have really regressed and doesn’t seem to be ready much but he’s still very young and I want him to stay on 1 more year with the B Team. For the greater good however, I’ll send him on loan..preferably to Sporting 😀 or (if they need him) Villareal

    Mourinho says “Dani Alves says I didn’t invent football? He’s right, Einstein couldn’t have said it better.”
    Einstein was an intensely private man who opinions were generally restricted to theology and physics and he never ever made smart-alec statements like both of the people involved in that quote. Mou is not fit to clean dust off Einstein’s trousers than talk about him. I’m sorry if I over-reacted but as a Science man it hurts a bit when a great’s name is tossed around like a inflatable beach ball at Woodstock.

    In other news,my brother’s getting engaged today so I am going to convey my condolence message to him 😀

    • barca96
      December 12, 2010

      😆 at the last part.
      Just watched “ghosts of gf’s past” again and he said a similair thing to hsi brother.

    • sab
      December 12, 2010

      may be he doesnt know einstein is the most brilliant mind in the history of theoretical science(even better then newton).he is a clown who knows what he is doing but sometimes he lost the plots.

      as a science man i sometimes think what would have happened if einstein wasnt born.

  39. Auld Super
    December 12, 2010

    Well said Isaiah but as much as I like UNICEF I was always against having them on the shirt. There was nothing on the jersey for 107 years and it should have stayed that way. Another reason for not having UNICEF on there was because it was like saying to the rest of football, not only do we not have a sponsor on there but we’re so much better than you we actually have a charity.

    This whole thing is a disaster and I’m not exaggerating.

  40. Miguel
    December 12, 2010

    so carlitos did hand in a transfer request:

    *http://www.mcfc.co.uk/News/Team-news/2010/December/Carlos-Tevez-A-statement

    but it was “rejected?” what does that mean? what are they thinking?

    • Jim
      December 12, 2010

      I’m guessing their thoughts are unprintable and they are playing hardball with Tevez. He can’t go anywhere unless they say so and they don’t seem to need the money so they can just sit and run down his contract letting him stew in the reserves and withholding wages if he refuses. . . . . as long as they can find someone else to score goals.

      Btw, watched Yaya in the game yesterday. Pretty impressive in the advanced role. Much better than earlier in the season as well. I think he’s decided he needs to be a bigger influence at city or he’ll look silly for going to a backwater.

      you have to say, ‘though. City are starting to look a little stronger in a season where the others seem to be going backwards.

      • blitzen
        December 12, 2010

        I too was impressed by Citeh yesterday, especially The Yaya and David Silva, who is by far the best on the ball. Looks like the team is finally gelling just at the time that Chelsea is fragmenting.

    • IS
      December 12, 2010

      Happens all the time… I had Puyi, Xavi, Valdes and Iniesta all hand me transfer requests (which were immediately rejected) in FM 2011 🙂

      (Sad, but true – still learning the ropes in the game)

  41. barca96
    December 12, 2010

    Which shirt do you guys prefer?
    I prefer the middle one.
    I like UNICEF to be in writing but it would just be too busy.

    *http://www.sport.es/vivo/recursos/fotos/foto_456/foto_456130_CAS.jpg

    • Diego S.
      December 12, 2010

      2nd and 3rd are good. But I don’t want the shirt to look over-crowded. I choose the 3rd.

    • sheena
      December 12, 2010

      I actually prefer the first. But only because I want UNICEF to be prominent.

      • K(legit)
        December 12, 2010

        If Rossel has his way it will be the 3rd one..
        I prefer the 2nd one myself

  42. esteve
    December 12, 2010

    Rosell is not having vice presidents followed, flying around on private jets, having parties on the club expense account, taking 3 million dollars for the sale of mallorca, using the clubs credit card for 500 dollar hotel rooms for Laportas mistress.

    Rosell president. Visca Barca

    • Vj
      December 12, 2010

      He has however,

      — “whored” out the shirt to the highest NP Organistion..

      — killed whatever chances people like me have of becoming a Soci..

      — almost lost us 3 points with the Osasuna fiasco..

      — made us look bad with what obviously is, a personal vendetta against Laporta..

      He will

      — Now limit/bar foreigners in our cantera, seriously affecting the chances of the next Messi coming from La Masia..

      — Make sponsorship deals renaming Palau Blaugrana and maybe Camp Nou..

      — Try his best in the next 6 years to change our motto to Just Another Club..

      RoSELL President, Visca Barca..

      • Miguel
        December 12, 2010

        you forgot about his selling chignasty from under pep’s nose.

        • Eklavya
          December 12, 2010

          And removing Cryuff from the honory president role.

    • jordi(TM)
      December 12, 2010

      Its impossible to know what hes done, till hes gone, or did you think he would investigate himself? Hallelujah theres no evidence of corruption by him in 5 months! Surely a precursor for the next 5 years.

    • Miguel
      December 12, 2010

      yep. i’ve liked the center back pairing, though. dos santos & vazquez on the bench. you have a stream that isn’t stop & go?

      • Jnice
        December 12, 2010

        *http://www.rojadirecta.org/goto/badtvnet1.blogspot.com

        Has worked well for me.

        • Miguel
          December 12, 2010

          i remember using this link at one point, too. must be me. thank you though :0)

  43. Jnice
    December 12, 2010

    Poor defending by Bartra 2-0. This one might be over.

  44. Miguel
    December 12, 2010

    wait, it’s not me.

    *http://www.justin.tv/cule27hdplus#/w/643286528/5

    almost down 3-0 now. i got 3 hours of sleep for this? 🙂

  45. Miguel
    December 12, 2010

    saul & nolito putting us back in the game.

  46. Miguel
    December 12, 2010

    jonathan soriano con el empate!

    2-2

    • Miguel
      December 12, 2010

      really making some headway down the flanks now. we’re getting #’s in the box, too.

  47. Miguel
    December 12, 2010

    albacete almost wins it late. a very hard earned point for the boys.

    nappy time now before we take on la real.

  48. Kari
    December 12, 2010

    Guardiola: “Pedro? If your dad works at a gas station, you can’t be a bad player. He’s an angel. We’re happy to have him, they all love him” [barcastuff]

    Like Xavi and the mushrooms.

    And this is why I love Graham Hunter.

    /http://espn.go.com/sports/soccer/news/_/id/5894424/why-barca-best-all-time

  49. Nick
    December 12, 2010

    Like some other people here, I have always been for a “clean” shirt. Unicef could be supported in so many different ways. Shame it has served as a door for QF and other future sales.

Leave a Reply