Previous
CSKA Moscow
Bayern Munich
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Manchester City
AS Roma
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Apoel Nicosia
Ajax Amsterdam
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Paris Saint-Germain
Barcelona
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Schalke 04
NK Maribor
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Sporting Lisbon
Chelsea
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
BATE Borisov
Athletic Bilbao
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Shakhtar Donetsk
FC Porto
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Brighton & Hove Albion
Cardiff City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Derby County
AFC Bournemouth
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Middlesbrough
Blackpool
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Millwall
Birmingham City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Norwich City
Charlton Athletic
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Rotherham United
Blackburn Rovers
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Sheffield Wednesday
Ipswich Town
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Watford
Brentford
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Wigan Athletic
Nottingham Forest
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Crewe Alexandra
Notts County
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
AFC Telford United
Chester City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Alfreton Town
Halifax
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Altrincham
Macclesfield Town
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Braintree Town
Barnet
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Dover
Aldershot Town
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Eastleigh
Bristol Rovers
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Forest Green Rovers
Torquay United
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Grimsby Town
Southport
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Lincoln City
Gateshead
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Welling
Dartford
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Woking
Nuneaton Town
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Wrexham
Kidderminster Harriers
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Aberdeen
St Mirren
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
León
Monterrey
1:06 AM GMT
Game Details
Atlas
Queretaro
1:30 AM GMT
Game Details
U.A.N.L
Santos
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Icasa
Luverdense
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Sampaio Correa-MA
Portuguesa de Desportos
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Vila Nova-GO
Ceará
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
AA Ponte Preta
Paraná Clube
11:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Al-Ain
Al Hilal
3:15 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 3
Game Details
Herediano
Universidad De Costa Rica
Postp
Postponed - now being played Wed, Oct 1
Game Details
Next
 Posted by Dermot Corrigan
Apr 2, 2014

Barca vow not to change youth model

FC's Sid Lowe breaks down how the punishment handed down to Barcelona will affect the club going forward.

The transfer ban imposed on his Barcelona is unfair and has come about due to a continuing campaign by unnamed enemies who want to damage the Camp Nou outfit, club president Josep Maria Bartomeu said on Thursday.

Tomas: Barca's next steps
Ter Stegen still plans move
Vote: Is transfer ban fair?

Bartomeu said the club has never broken any Spanish regulations in signing young talents to its La Masia academy. He said the club has been "the victim of a grave injustice" and vowed it will not change its model for recruiting youth players despite being penalised with a transfer ban by FIFA.

FIFA's punishment "penalises a model that has worked for 35 years. We have no intention of changing our model. You can't touch our Masia," he said

Bartomeu says other clubs also breach FIFA's rules, but did not name them. Barcelona will appeal the ban.

On Wednesday, FIFA found Barcelona guilty of repeatedly breaching transfer regulations in signing youth players.

FIFA announced on Wednesday that Barca would not be able to sign any players for two transfer windows after being found guilty of breaking rules related to youth transfers. The La Liga club said it will appeal to FIFA -- and to the Court of Arbitration for Sport if necessary.

Bartomeu told a news conference at the Camp Nou on Thursday that he was confident this appeal would be successful and Barca would be able to conduct transfers as usual this summer.

"It is unfair what has happened," Bartomeu said. "We are an exemplary club in every way. We trust a lot in our lawyers. They say they have arguments for the punishment to be withdrawn. We do not see ourselves as victims, we are working to make the club greater, we will answer when we have to against FIFA and CAS, what has happened is unjust."

Taking a similar tack to when it emerged the club's signing of Neymar last summer was being investigated last January, Bartomeu suggested the ban was part of a long campaign by unnamed enemies aimed at damaging the Catalan club.

"We have noticed that externally they are trying to do damage to Barca, and we are investigating this," he said. "We remember cases with doping, a player who had paid taxes etcetera. We are investigating and we have evidence. When we have proof we will look for these people. We are sure of what has happened. It will all come out in the end."

Barca’s defence in the case appears to be that their La Masia academy provides an excellent all-round education for youngsters, and should not be subject to rules designed to combat the 'trafficking' of children by unscrupulous agents and clubs.

"We agree with the regulations, what we want is for clubs like Barca to be an exception," Bartomeu said. "The [punishment is] against a model of 35 years which is the essence of our club, an exemplary model which has been praised by FIFA. Xavi, Iniesta, Messi... we look after the kids, their education. Maybe in their country they would not receive this education. In our youth system we have 230 children from 18 different countries, 40 of these are not Spanish. The message is that you cannot touch La Masia."

Bartomeu said that once the club had been informed of FIFA’s concerns over the youth transfers, Barca had attempted to act in accordance with the relevant regulations.

"When FIFA told the kids could not play, they stopped playing,” he said. “The parents of these kids want them to stay with us. We ask FIFA to look from case to case, the circumstances of each kid, so that there can be exceptions to the rules.”

Bartomeu did not directly address a question from a reporter asking if he thought Barca’s rivals Real Madrid had started the issue by making a complaint to FIFA, but he did say that other clubs in Spain and elsewhere in Europe had players in their youth systems who had been signed in similar ways.

"I prefer not to talk about other clubs, but the situation of Barca is the same with other clubs here [in La Liga] and many other foreign clubs," he said.

Barca's summer transfer plans, which have already seen a deal agreed for Croatian starlet Alen Halilovic and also reportedly a move made for Borussia Moenchengladbach goalkeeper Marc Andre ter Stegen, were continuing as normal despite the judgement, Bartomeu said.

"We are not concerned about the planning for next season," he said. "It continues the same, there will be no change." Information from The Associated Press and Press Association was used in this report.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.