It’s been a long time coming, but Josep Maria Bartomeu has finally done the decent thing and tendered his resignation from the Barcelona presidency.
That it’s taken Lionel Messi threatening to leave and Barca’s supporters having to get thousands of votes in the middle of a pandemic in order for him to realise he’s no longer wanted is disgraceful.
However, at least his time is now at an end.Barcelona can finally look forward, with the only question mark now as to who will be the new incumbent.
Bartomeu will recommend his preferred candidate of course, but whether anyone who has an association to him will be in with a chance remains to be seen.
It’s almost certain that former president, Joan Laporta, will present a candidacy again, and though he was soundly beaten by Bartomeu last time out, he still retains the affections of many given he oversaw the best period in Barca’s history.
Moreover, the senior players in the squad are all known to be fond of him.
Victor Font can’t be discounted at this point either. Not too much was known about him until recently, but the fact that he has Xavi as his manager, should his project be successful, gives him an advantage from the get go.
Having ex-players from the golden era back at the club will surely be the way that both Font and Laporta will help sell their candidacies.
One of the major hurdles that Font faces is that some of his ideas are seen as revolutionary. For example, when voting for a new president, Barcelona’s members will only be able to do so if they are in Barcelona itself.
Font wants to change this so that in the modern age, votes of any type at the club can be done electronically from all over the world, thus giving a far more accurate picture amongst the membership.
Regardless, a new dawn is beginning at the club, and it will enthuse supporters who have become disillusioned with the way in which things have been done over the last few years.
Bartomeu seems to have dug himself a bigger hole month after month, and eventually the walls have just closed in around him.
Now the members have the opportunity of voting in the right candidate before Christmas, giving them the possibility of keeping Messi at the club until he retires – which was originally the plan until Bartomeu kept altering the goalposts.