Pep Guardiola defends Barcelona over the ‘Negreira case’ after Joan Laporta was accused of bribery

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Pep Guardiola says Barcelona must be considered innocent until proven guilty after Joan Laporta was accused of bribery in the Negreira case.

Guardiola was Barcelona coach between 2008 and 2012, during which time the club is alleged to have made payments to former referees chief Jose Maria Enriquez Negreira.

Guardiola, who guided Barca to three consecutive La Liga titles and two more Champions Leagues in his four years in charge, insisted his side’s success had nothing to do with the referees.

“You didn’t see how good this team was, it was a scandal how well we played”, said Guardiola in a press conference.

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“When there is a punishment, I will give my opinion. “Barça is innocent, Laporta is innocent, until proven otherwise”.

Laporta, who was president between 2003 and 2010 and returned to the role in 2021, has been accused of being involved in making the payments, which Barça claim were simply for Negreira to compile reports on referees.

Guardiola is back in action with his Manchester City team this weekend, as they host Brighton at the weekend.

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