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By ESPN Staff

Laporta gives Barca credit for Spanish success

Former Barcelona president Joan Laporta believes the Blaugrana were the true winners of this summer's World Cup.

There were eight Barca players in Spain's triumphant 23-man squad in South Africa, with seven - Carles Puyol, Gerard Pique, Xavi, Sergio Busquets, Andres Iniesta, Pedro and David Villa - starting in the final against Netherlands.

"Barca won the World Cup with a different shirt, or with the wrong shirt," Laporta told El Mundo in an interview.

However, Laporta conceded that Spain's victory was not all down to Barca. Real Madrid had five players in the squad - Iker Casillas, Sergio Ramos, Raul Albiol, Alvaro Arbeloa and Xabi Alonso - while Sevilla, Valencia, Villarreal, Athletic Bilbao, Liverpool and Arsenal all had representatives.

"The (playing) style was Barca's, but there were other players from other clubs that were fundamental," he said.

Laporta led Barcelona to 12 trophies in seven years as president of the Catalan club, but the former lawyer is now looking to begin a political career in Catalonia.

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