Barcelona presidential candidate Joan Laporta has said that it would be best for the Spanish national team not to play at Camp Nou, and will ask for them to play elsewhere should he be elected.
Laporta previously served as club president between 2003 and 2010, helping Barça re-establish themselves as one of Europe’s top sides. Signing Ronaldinho in the summer of 2003 and winning the Champions League in 2006, La Blaugrana then embarked on one of the greatest eras in football history under the stewardship of Pep Guardiola.
Following the departure of the unpopular Josep Maria Bartomeu in October, Laporta announced his intentions to run for president yet again in the upcoming January elections.
He has confirmed that should he be successful in his bid, La Roja will not be welcome at Camp Nou, citing the lack of support for the national side in Barcelona – where Catalonian independency is heavily supported – as one of reasons for the decision.
“Luis Rubiales, president of the RFEF [Spanish Football Federation], is an intelligent person who knows that the best thing for the national team is to play where they have more support, such as in Seville, Valencia or Madrid,” Laporta said, as reported by Marca.
“And perhaps here [in Barcelona] is not the most appropriate place. The best decision would be for Spain not to play at Camp Nou is because here the conditions are not the most positive for them to do so.”
However, Laporta did go on to stress that he would be open to hearing the opinions of his board should he be elected president in January.
“I am not willing to enter into controversy,” Laporta added. “I do not renounce what I think and feel, but Barcelona have the greatness of being able to defend the rights of Catalonia and at the same time integrate and respect everyone.
“Everyone fits within the Barcelona that I propose.”