Former politician and current political commentator Ramon Espinar has publicly retracted comments he made about Barcelona, following revelations about the Negreira case.
Espinar used to be a member of parliament and then a member of the Madrid general assembly before his resignation in 2019, first becoming part of the PSOE socialist party, and then the Podemos progressive party in Madrid.
Following some of the stories coming out about Negreira, Espinar made several tweets mocking Barcelona fans saying ‘The referee was paid, but they were so good they would have won anyway’, or ‘The judge was paid but they would have won the case anyway’.
He also claimed that Barcelona had ‘robbed titles’ and ‘bought referees’. On Sunday morning, Espinar tweeted out a retraction of those statements, saying he would delete them. He added that he lacked the information to allow him to identify whether a referee, match or result had been altered through illicit influence, bribery or advantages gained.
Reconozco que carezco de elementos de conocimiento que me permitan identificar un árbitro, encuentro o resultado alterado por razón de ilícita influencia o entrega de beneficio o ventaja.
— Ramón Espinar (@RamonEspinar) September 17, 2023
Barcelona President Joan Laporta had made it clear that they would go after journalists or public figures legally who had made statements about the club without evidence.
The Negreira case is currently being investigated for systemic corruption, following payments of between €7m and €8m to the former Vice-President of the Referees Technical Committee (CTA) over a period of 17 years. No evidence has been found that Barcelona are guilty of any wrongdoing.