Joan Laporta is the favorite to return for a second term as Barcelona president, with just three candidates maintaining their electoral hopes
Three candidates are in the running to become Barcelona president after the withdrawal of Emili Rousaud from the electoral process.
Rousaud announced on Thursday that he was no longer in the frame to replace Josep Maria Bartomeu, who left office in October.
Joan Laporta, Victor Font and Toni Freixa are the trio of candidates vying for president.
Laporta had 9,625 validated signatures, while there were 4,431 and 2,634 for Font and Freixa respectively in the validation process for an election to be held on Sunday January 24.
Jordi Farre, Xavier Vilajoana, Agusti Benedito, Luis Fernandez Ala and Pere Riera had previously been sidelined from the race after failing to reach the 2,257 signing threshold.
Rousaud had declared that he no longer wanted to engage in a “dirty war” in order to have the right to succeed Bartomeu.
Marca He said: “It was a day of impressive dignity because, to my surprise, the decision of the majority was not to accept to join another candidacy, because we cannot tolerate the dirty war and we prefer to stay out.
“Our sporting and economic proposals were the best.”
The candidate, as he revealed to Goal, has two priorities for a second presidency: to enlarge Camp Nou and ensure that Lionel Messi is there to see it.
“I wish we could celebrate the 125th anniversary at the new Camp Nou and with Leo with us. The stadium issue is not easy because it takes two years to build it.
“Leo’s question is easier than the stadium one. It would be very nice to get to this anniversary with Messi, it would be a good final fireworks display.”
When asked why he was the best man to convince Messi to stay on Barca’s books, Laporta replied: “Because I am telling the truth, I am the one with the most experience and determination, as well as the most credibility in his eyes.It fills me with pride that he tells me that everything I have told him has been accomplished.
“It gives me a job and, if I’m president of Barcelona, and that’s one of the reasons, I’ll see what I can offer him in the club’s possibilities in terms of finances and in which interests Leo from a sporting perspective .
“He wants to win the Champions League again with Barca and we have to make him see that it will be possible.”