Barcelona presidential candidate Agustí Benedito gave an interview to Catalan online paper El Singular Digital.
Are you in favour of linking politics and sports?
No, not at all. The Catalan character of Barça defines Barça. Nobody can want, and in any case he won't get away with it, to reduce the Catalan identity of the club by even a millimetre. This is an integral part of the club, it's defining and it must be defended strongly, firmly.
That's what Laporta does, no?
To defend the Catalan character of Barça is one thing and getting involved in party politics is another. I respect his political ideas and I recognise his aspirations, but he should do all this once he has left the presidency of the club. Barça cannot be used for any personal interest. Laporta takes advantage of Barça and the club's Catalan character for his political career. He has made a big mistake there.
The candidates now have to deal with a club that is too politicized?
Yes. In the last months Laporta has managed to increase the instability and the tension among the fans of Barça. We must defend the club's Catalan identity without looking for any personal gain and without doing party politics.
Let's change subject. The candidate Alfons Godall wants to reach a club budget of 1.000 million euros in 2016. Is that possible?
Saying things like that can have a media impact but I find it little rigorous. A budget should be understood within a framework of a balance sheet and a profit and loss account. I'd like to know on the basis of which models they are working, but in general I would like them to use these concepts in a more solid and serious way.
It also has an impact on the bank guarantees needed in future elections, right?
If Barça has a budget of 1.000 million euros, the club member who wants to take part in future elections should put down a guarantee of 150 millions since the guarantee should represent 15% of the budget of the club. The board should not put down that guarantee, that's what the statutes say. Therefore, it would be very difficult for a non-board club member to participate.
Strangely we have talked little about sports. At this level, the current Barça can be improved?
It's impossible to improve the results of the senior football team of Barça, we have won everything. Regarding the sports structures, if we win the elections we want to talk with Josep Guardiola to explain him what our idea is and to shape things based on his opinion.
It seems that he's not ready to stay at the club for a long time.
I think he would like to continue and we will do what we can to make this happen. If he doesn't, Barça will go on as it has done in these 109 years of history before he arrived. The challenge is very big, the results are historical, but we must never give up the objective, the will and the dream to repeat it, with or without Pep.
You think he feels comfortable with the board of Laporta?
I'm not aware of the details of the personal relationship between them. But it's very clear to Guardiola that it was the current president and the current board who gave him the opportunity to become the coach of Barça. I don't have other information than that.
this was the third and last part of this interview.
Read the previous parts:
Benedito: "I shaped a reliable and solid model"
Benedito: "Board should be at same level as team"
interview: xavier march