“Want to see you again”said the gigantic banner that, in mid-December, Joan Laporta It was ordered to hang over a building on the Paseo de La Habana in Madrid, a few meters from the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium. The Barcelona lawyer always liked that game. The pique, the impudence that he always championed, brings him back with that phrase. That move was brilliant when it came to marketing. His face and his candidacy appeared on all television newscasts and made the front pages of all sports media.
He is already a candidate for all purposes for the presidency of the Barcelona Soccer Club, after collecting nothing more and nothing less than 10,257 signatures –8,000 more than necessary–, has a long way to go in this long-distance race, the elections, which if nothing changes and the pandemic allows it, the next one will take place January 24th. Whenever a candidate had such an advantage in collecting signatures, they ended up being president in subsequent votes. In an interview in El Larguero de la SER, he reveals what other phrase he was advised to place on the Madrid banner.
«They suggested another phrase: ‘A great team deserves the best rival’. But I preferred the ‘want to see you again’, it’s more direct. Mark what my personality is, “he said. Laporta on the airwaves, making it clear that with him would return that rivalry and dispute that reigned years ago. It was not the only thing he said. The Barcelona player plays with that trick, with the carte blanche, with what the Catalans already experienced during their time at the club, something that he did not stop remembering during his interview.
«During my time as president, I had barcelonitis. And I’m going to try to get Barcelonaitis again. If he told me something Florentine of the banner? Ask him … », he also commented Laporta, who did not miss any opportunity to remember what Barça won with him in the mandate: “People think I’m always partying, what happened is that we won a lot and I really like to celebrate.”
It was not the only issue that surrounded the interview to Laporta. Evidently, Leo Messi it is always on the table. His future remains as uncertain as who will win the Champions League this season. «Messi is not guided by money, he wants to win the Champions League again. I will tell Messi that he will like the sports project a lot, I will make a proposal that I can fulfill and he knows», He slipped, without getting too wet, over the Argentine although he was pointing an advantage at the moment:« He cannot be fooled as in past seasons. I think with Messi I have an advantage Regarding the rest of the candidates, we have a relationship of mutual appreciation. If Messi tells me no, Barça continues. But it is something that I do not contemplate. He wants to stay. But if not, we continue… ».
He was also reminded of an alleged offer from the Real Madrid by the Argentine, of which he admitted not knowing anything: «No i had no knowledge. Of the Inter yes. It was an amount for which another president might have shown a weakness. They were talking about the clause, I said no and they went up ».
The elections and their favoritism
Right now Laporta he is the clear favorite to win the elections. It is said by the number of signatures collected and also by the feelings that each one transmits. He’s the only one who wants the day to be celebrated January 24th At all costs, despite the data on the pandemic, unlike the rest: «We think it is completely absurd that the presidential elections cannot be held on the 24th. The Barça needs a strong leadership. The Generalitat does not have the power to decide on the elections.
«I am with winning morale, but I am not under my guard nor do I trust myself», confessed Laporta, who did not want to make much of a party about Víctor Font, his great rival in the elections: «If Barcelona will be in good hands if he wins? He’ll be in better hands if I win.
Xavi, Guardiola, Piqué, Neymar …
There were several code names that he commented Joan Laporta during your interview. One of them Xavi, one of the banners of the project Victor Font about which he said that «one day he will be a Barça coach. In my project I have not said names because I do not think it is appropriate. Everything that is said in relation to names destabilizes the coaching staff. And dodged the bullet from Guardiola: «If I would like him to come back? I want the best for him. I congratulated him when he renewed with City, if that’s what he wants, I’m happy for him.
Pique was another of those who stood out although it was in the future as a presidential rival: “I don’t think I will face Piqué in an election in the future, we would go together.” No names of signings have come out of Laporta’s mouth, not even Neymar: I’m not going to talk about names. I know how this goes. If I talk about one, I am raising the price and devaluing the one I have in that position.