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Pique dismisses Barcelona-Negreira case: “The country lives on conspiracies”



Photo by THOMAS COEX/AFP via Getty Images

Barcelona have been rocked by allegations over their supposed involvement in the Enriquez Negreira payoff scandal this year, with investigations alleging that they had paid up to €7 million to the former vice-president of the referee’s committee for insights.

There are even accusations of result manipulation from the Catalan side, and the allegations may soon lead to legal proceedings.

Real Madrid have already vowed to take part as an opposition in the legal proceedings while former Barcelona managers Luis Enrique and Ernesto Valverde are set to be summoned as well.

Amid all the noise, Gerard Pique has dismissed Barcelona’s involvement in the Negreira scandal, suggesting that the players at least did not know of any payoff scandal.

“Nothing happened to the players. I never asked for anything. Others asked for reports from the opposing team and perhaps some did from the referees. I have no idea. At the group level, of course, we received nothing,” Pique told El Pais.

The veteran, who announced his retirement at the end of last year, is one of Barcelona’s most prominent defenders in history, with a total of 616 competitive appearances for the Blaugrana.

Adding to his take on the Negreira case, Pique stressed that the ongoing allegations are mere headline grabbers in newspapers and urged for media literacy.

“This is a subject that gives for conspiracies and newspaper front pages. That’s what the country lives on. I think you have to teach the why of things,” he said.

Pique’s comments come just after Barcelona president Joan Laporta broke his silence on the matter by issuing a strong statement. He suggested that Barça will soon come up with evidence against people that want to bring the club down. He further stressed that the club are now ready to ‘attack’.

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