There is rarely a dull day at Camp Nou. Just when it seemed things were beginning to turn the corner for Barcelona, a scandal is developing that may well threaten Joan Laporta’s future as President of the club.
According to Cadena Cope, Barcelona have falsely inflated their accounts using their own money. Part of their inability to register players is a €150m difference in La Liga’s interpretation of Barcelona’s income to their own.
It had been reported that this was down to La Liga not accepting the capital gains on their economic levers. Cope say that this is in fact part of the sale of 25% of their TV rights to Sixth Street. The US company reported an outlay of €517m, rather than the €667m Barcelona were counting on as income.
That difference was allegedly provided by Logskley Investments S.L., a company created by Sixth Street and Barcelona for the exclusive purpose of this deal with each owning 50% of the entity. Barcelona then loaned €150m of their own money to Logskley Investments, who in turn paid that back to Barcelona as part of the TV rights deal, thus falsely inflating the value of the deal.
It is not yet clear whether there are legal implications from that, but it does mean that Barcelona will be due around €37m in tax on the deal.
As a result, Barcelona remain unable to register players and with a hefty bill from their financial trick. Members at Barcelona will also be wondering whether they can trust Laporta after using shady means to improve their finances and once again smearing the reputation of the club.