Xavi said on Thursday, on the eve of Barcelona’s confrontation with its host Seville in the eighth stage of the league, that he did not feel refereeing favoritism during his time playing with the team.
On Thursday, the police raided the headquarters of the Spanish Football Federation in Madrid, as part of an investigation into suspicious payments that put the league title holder in charge.
Xavi, who played for Barcelona between 1998 and 2015, continued: “You know my opinion, I never felt any favoritism from the referees.”
He asked journalists to return to his previous statements regarding this thorny case known as the “Neguerera case,” named after José María Enriques Negrera, former vice president of the arbitration panel.
Elements of the “alleged scandal”
- According to the prosecution that opened the case in 2022, the Catalan club paid a total of more than 7.3 million euros to Negrera, the former referee and former vice-president of the technical arbitration committee of the Spanish Federation between 1994 and 2018.
- According to Barcelona, which at the time denied any wrongdoing, the company “Dasnel 95”, owned by Negrera, received financial fees for advising the club on arbitration matters, but the Spanish judiciary believes that the amounts in question could have been used to corrupt the game’s referees.
- Barcelona President Joan Laporta said last March: “Barcelona never bought referees, and had no intention of buying, so let things be clear.”
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