Joan Laporta recently addressed a press conference where he refuted former Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu’s open letter, calling it a desperate attempt and full of lies.
“The first thing we had to do is request a bridge loan of 80 million, because otherwise, we could not pay the payroll, in addition to agreeing on a series of conditions with the creditors.” He also pointed out that “we found that urgent works had to be carried out at the Camp Nou, which if they were not carried out would pose a risk to people’s health”.
“50% of the TV rights were charged in advance and the financial expense was at 6%, which was unsustainable”, as opposed to the 1.2% agreed with Goldman Sachs by its board.
Laporta addressed the economic tumult within the club as well, stating that the total debt of the club is over 1,350 million. The losses reported due to the Covid pandemic is estimated to be around €91 million. Additionally, the net worth of the club is -451 million, which makes it extremely difficult for the Barca name as a company to be appealing to investors.
“191 million had to be cut in salaries in the 20-21 season. None of that, 68 have been deferred, and we also find ourselves later in loyalty bonuses, end of contract, etc … “
Among the several lies that Bartomeu has reportedly mentioned in his letter is, according to Laporta:
“That they could not make economic decisions and that is why 375 million were lost (in 20-21). They made a budget presented with benefits, with forecast of player transfers; reduction of player salaries; stadium opening in February; Barça Corporate… none of the hypotheses have been fulfilled ”.
Laporta also mentioned the situation surrounding the registration of Memphis Depay and Sergio Aguero. The pay cut taken by Gerard Pique was key in helping the club sort out the situation, and he hopes that other captains will also follow the same example.