Note: This is my view, and my view only. This is not the opinion of Barca Blaugranes, or any of it's writers.
Tot el camp, és un clam,
som la gent Blaugrana,
tant se val d'on venim,
si del sud o del nord,
ara estem d'acord, estem d'acord,
una bandera ens agermana.
Some of you will instantly recognise the above top to be the first verse of El Cant del Barca, the official anthem for Barcelona. Since 1974, thousands, nay, millions have stood at the Camp Nou, and sung these very words. A symbol what it means to be a culé, you sing this song, live this song, for the Blaugrana.
Or at least that was the impression I got.
Though it seems that the above applies to every Barcelona fan, but notably, it does not apply to one man. The man with the power: Sandro Rosell.
The man with the power runs the club, makes the decisions, sends the important emails. He rules like a dictator, not caring what anyone else thinks or if they have an opinion or not, some say that makes a successful businessman, I say it does not.
His "success" means that Barcelona have all but severed all ties with Arsenal FC, Real Madrid and the reputation of the club has taken a battering. I could argue all day about how this club is not full of divers, who bought off UEFA, etc, but the consensus of the majority is that Barcelona are not "mes que un club", but instead, a disgrace.
For the former marketing guru at Nike, Rosell is not marketing this club very well.
Not only that, but he is alienating the average Barcelona supporter, who is not a thorough-bred Catalan, but more likely to be a non-Spanish citizen. Under Rosell’s "regime", I cannot apply to become a member of FC Barcelona. Nor can Bostjan, or Sebastian, or the majority of our staff here at Barca Blaugranes.
Instead, as we are not Catalan or related to a member, we must fly to the head offices, in Barcelona, at great expense to our person, and apply for a "commitment card". This card cost around £100 per year, and to hold this privilege, you must show them many forms of identity, along with your bank account details.
Then, you must hold the card for three years, and only then will the club "consider" your application to become a member, which also costs money.
I think Rosell is deluded, after all, he believes that only Catalans are true Barcelona fans. The following is hypothetical, but I’m sure it applies to someone:
There is a Barcelona fan in Japan. He loves Barcelona, the players, the style of play, everything. He has been a fan since the Gaspart days, and has stuck with the club thorugh thick and thin. He listens to el Cant del Barca multiple times in a day, and has even learnt Catalan. For the matches, he gets up at 3am on a Monday morning, despite the fact he starts work later on that morning, and he never misses a match. He also flies to Barcelona as often as time allows, at great expense, yet according to Rosell, he is less of a fan than the man from La Pobla de Segur, whose father is a member, but only checks the scores on the Monday morning in the paper. He has never seen a match.
How in the world could that be fair?
Rosell thinks it is, though it must be said, he views Asia as a place for his child-labour sweatshops, not as a place for Barcelona fans...
Whatever the case, my opinion does not matter, and moreover, it never will, as Rosell will continue to sign sponsorship deals with a foundation linked to far-right extremists, while advocating a policy that promotes xenophobia, and burning the bridges with every club he encounters.
If this is the last opinion piece I ever write, I think its best I got this off my chest.
After all, Rosell should read the lyrics of the Barcelona anthem, especially line three.
The entire field is a clamour,
we are the blue and red people,
no matter where we come from,
be it south or north,
now we all agree, we all agree,
a flag unites us in brotherhood.
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