ESPN pundit Craig Burley has told La Liga president Javier Tebas to “shut up” regarding his comments relating to FC Barcelona’s proposed transfer of Robert Lewandowski from Bayern Munich.
Speaking during a segment on ESPN FC, the channel’s soccer-focused department, the former Premier League and Scottish League midfielder disagreed vehemently with Tebas’s choice to comment on the transfer.
Tebas had earlier made the following comments: “[Barcelona] know what they have to do. They know perfectly well our economic control rules and their financial situation. The rules are there to avoid major economic problems. I don’t know if they will sell [Frenkie] De Jong, Pedri, or [famous Spanish clown] Pepito Perez.
“They know what they have to do - sell assets and earn more, this is what they have to do.
“Barca has had many accumulated losses in the last tax years, some which could have been avoided and they have to stock the pantry.
“Just as Madrid have stocked up, Barcelona have emptied it. Today they cannot sign [Lewandowski].”
Barcelona club president Joan Laporta responded by saying, “I ask that he abstain from making comments about possible signings by Barça.”
During the panel on ESPN FC, another pundit, Sid Lowe, chimed in saying that Tebas’s comments were unnecessary and unhelpful.
Burley responded to Lowe, who was calling in with a bookshelf as his background, asking jokingly: “you want to give Tebas some of the books behind you, Sid? Get him to shut up for a little bit? Go and read, go and do something... he’s got nothing better to do?
“At the end of the day he can administer the financial rules and regulations on Barcelona and every other club as he has been doing. He has been strict, but when they sign, if they sign a player.
”If they can’t meet that criteria, then they’re not going to be able to register or sign the player. Once it gets to that point, then it’s a problem for Tebas.
“This is just hearsay at the moment... This is just transfer talk. This is just potential negotiations, this is just a game of bluff between clubs, players, and agents.”