News From Spain: Barcelona paid Vice-President of Technical Referees Committee 1.4m over 3 years for neutral treatment

Barcelona are once again mired in controversy after it was revealed that they had been paying the Vice President of the Technical Committee for Referees, Enriquez Negreira, over a period of three years.

The payments were a significant €1.392m between 2016 and 2018 under the leadership of Josep Maria Bartomeu. Diario AS carried this information from SER Catalunya and put it with their own, saying that these payments are being investigated by the Justice Department in corruption case involving Negreira.

Technical Consultancy was the supposed reason for these payments, with AS also adding that Barcelona wanted to ensure ‘everything was neutral’. The Technical Committee are in charge of providing guidance on refereeing practice, assessing referee performance and assigning referees.

Negreira himself is an ex-referee, and seemingly Barcelona also asked for advice for their players on how to deal with certain referees on the pitch.

Barcelona emitted a statement shortly after the news broke, with the following statements.


Image via Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images