Spanish radio host Carlos Herrera has fiercely attacked FC Barcelona over a statement the club put out in regards to prison sentences given to Catalan independence leaders. The host of “Herrera en COPE,” a show on Cadena COPE, called Barça “a club in service of criminals” in a rant that also took aim at former Barcelona player and manager Pep Guardiola and former player Xavi Hernández.
This stems from the Spanish Supreme Court giving lengthy prison sentences to nine Catalan separatist leaders for organizing an independence referendum in 2017, as well as making an independence declaration in the Catalan parliament. Notably, the former vice-president of Catalonia, Oriol Junqueras, was given a 13-year prison term.
In a statement, Barcelona called for the release of the leaders, arguing that “just as pre-trial detention did not help resolve the conflict, neither will the sentence issued today, because prison is not the solution. The resolution of the conflict that Catalonia is experiencing is exclusively through political dialogue.”
Herrera seemed infuriated by the statement, getting on COPE to deliver the following missive:
“Is it striking that institutions in Catalan civil society essential for balance, such as Barça, can become victims of disaffection in many spaces as a result of having supported criminals, convicts? And, in addition, due to joining - as they do - alongside the Guardiolas, Hernándezes, and other cretins, in the actions of this scum? Well, you will see. But it is a club at the service of criminals.”
These statements come as massive protests, sometimes descending into outright vandalism, have overtaken the region in response to the harsh jail terms.