Former Referee Vice President Offered To ‘Help’ FC Barcelona With VAR -Reports

The Former Vice President of the Referee’s Committee Jose Maria Enriquez Negreira offered to “help” FC Barcelona with VAR, according to reports.

On Tuesday, it was revealed that Spain’s Prosecutor’s Office will file charges against Barca for “continuous corruption” allegedly carried out by the club in relation to payments it made to Negreira through his Dasnil 95 company.

Catalan radio program Que t’hi jugues initially revealed in last month that the payments came to around €1.4 million ($1.5 million) from 2016 to 2018. Later on, El Mundo said they totaled almost €7 million ($7.5 million) from 2001 to 2018, which is a timeframe that also takes in president Joan Laporta’s first run in charge from 2003 to 2010.

Both Laporta and Barca have denied wrongdoing, with Laporta using a special address on the matter to insist that each payment can be explained by “invoices and documentary and video support” for consultation services carried out by Negreira.

As the revelations and accusations in the case continue to unravel, however, El Mundo claims to have obtained new evidence showing how Negreira contacted Barca in 2020 offering his expertise in navigating VAR which was introduced two years prior.

Following the recommencement of football after the pandemic, Real Madrid won the La Liga title with what many thought were controversial decisions in their favor granted by VAR.

This allegedly caused Negreira to contact the board of then-president Josep Bartimeu and tell them: “‘With me you would have done better … I can help you with VAR. If you are interested, contact me.”

It is said that Barca did not reply to Negreira, with then-CEO Oscar Grau calling the Former Vice President a “scumbag” and planning to meet him to tell Negreira to back off.

Whether the meeting took place or not is unknown, but almost five years since Barca allegedly stopped making payments to Negreira, the controversy rages on with fresh reports made daily in Spain.

By AS, it is said that Laporta plus fellow former presidents Joan Gaspart and Sandro Rosell will all be asked to testify as witnesses by the Prosecutor’s Office when the case is brought before the courts.