Josep Maria Bartomeu : The man who keeps winning against all the odds

Bibek Bimali

Kathmandu, Feb 13. Josep Maria Bartomeu, the current President of FC Barcelona is not an uncommon name for Barca fans.

The relation of Bartomeu and Barca goes back to long time. He was the head of basketball section under the presidency of Joan Laporta. He then served as vice-president of Barca from 2010 to 2014 under the presidency of Sandro Rosell. Bartomeu became the president of Barca after the resignation of Rosell in 2014 and went on to win another presidential term the following year by defeating former president Joan Laporta. He will serve as club president till June 2021.

Often criticized by the internet fan base for ignoring Barca model , there are more than few things where he has done wonders, be it bringing Luis Enrique as a manager after trophyless season in 2014 or saving the club from Catalan crisis in 2017. His decision to bring Ernesto Valverde as the replacement of former boss Luis Enrique also seemed to be wise decision. The club has grown massively on financial aspect too.

Barca is now financially biggest club in Spain and the club enjoys the best kit and shirt sponsorship deals with Nike and Japanese company Rakuten along with many other sponsors like Beko , Qatar Airlines and Viber. Club’s coordination with UNICEF is also praised worldwide.

Barca have won 9 trophies under his presidency in three years including 2 Laliga titles and 1 Champions League title. It was under his presidency Barca won its second treble in 2014-15 season becoming the first team in the history to win two trebles. And the present only shows that Barca will keep winning more trophies under his presidency.

Club legend and captain Andres Iniesta has signed life time contract setting the example in modern football. Other home grown players are also masssively respected citing an example that Barca will always care for its young foootballers who come from club’s youth academy. Another major aspect of Bartomeu is his ability to lure big signings.

It was under his lead that Barca managed to sign Neymar for €57 million under the nose of other top European clubs. The player left for hefty €222 millions 4 year later just down to the loophole in his contract.

The signing of Ter Stegen and Samuel Umtiti for relatively low price in European football also proved to be vital. Now Stegen and Umtiti are one of the best players in their position and their worth have increased massively in last few years. Under Bartomeu , Barca have signed some of the biggest stars in world football too.

Bartomeu is expert in cracking those deals which seemed to be impossible for others even to imagine. He hss delivered the signing of players like Luis Suarez , Phillipe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele against all the odds. The latest Coutinho signing also indicates the statement that Barca is still on of the biggest team and they can sign who ever they want.

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