La Liga: Barcelona President Josep Bartomeu and the rest of club’s board resign

Barcelona President Josep Bartomeu and the rest of club’s board resign

Barcelona President Josep Bartomeu and the rest of the club’s board resign

Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu and the rest of the club’s board resign.

Josep Maria Bartomeu has handed in his resignation at the LaLiga club.

The director has faced several calls to step down from the Catalans hierarchy after several controversies over the summer, including the public fall-out with Lionel Messi which nearly forced the Barcelona captain to leave the Camp Nou.

On Monday, Bartomeu said there was ‘no reason for him to resign’ ahead of an imminent vote of no confidence – but an emergency meeting on Tuesday saw the 57-year-old and the other directors hand in their resignation.

Now Messi’s chances of staying at Barcelona have risen dramatically following Bartomeu’s departure.

The president was the centre of Messi’s criticisms when the Argentine announced his shock transfer request to Barcelona earlier this summer.

The Barcelona captain revealed the president did not keep his word about letting Messi leave the club if he wanted to, as the 33-year-old tried to move on a free transfer due to a clause in his contract.

Bartomeu was also criticised over the I3 Ventures scandal, which has allegedly seen Barcelona chief Jaume Masferrer lead a social media project alongside the LaLiga club to damage the reputations of figures such as Gerard Pique, Messi and the Argentinian star’s wife.

As the pressure mounted over the weekend, Bartomeu insisted that he would not step down, irrespective of the impending vote of no confidence from other Barcelona chiefs.

Barcelona are currently lying in 12th place in the LaLiga table after back-to-back defeats in Spain’s top-flight, a run further compounded by an El Clasico loss to Real Madrid on Saturday.