The good ship FC Barcelona has been sailing on choppy waters for some time now. They ended the 2019-20 season without any trophies, while the start to the 2020-21 campaign has been poor, well below the customarily high expectations of this Spanish European giant. However, with presidential elections just around the corner, many FC Barcelona changes could be on the horizon.
Fanatical overseas fans are worried
Not many football teams boast the kind of international following that Barcelona currently enjoy, which is largely due to a mixture of consistent success on the pitch and plenty of engagement off it. The club has recently made important strides developing its online presence.
The official FC Barcelona club website and social network feeds are available in multiple languages, although none are more popular than those in English. The official Facebook page has more than 100 million followers, Instagram over 92 million, while Twitter has almost 35 million.
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) December 29, 2020
When looking through any of the social media posts, it’s easy to see that some of the most fanatical overseas fans are located in India, given their interactions. Supporters from the Asian country are often upbeat, yet also concerned at performances this season and with good reason. Barcelona are now behind Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid in the betting stakes to win La Liga.
At the start of the season, countless Indian fans will undoubtedly have been flocking to the most popular sports betting sites, wagering on how their favorite team would fare this season. Aside from reading reviews of the best odds and offers available in their region, Indian soccer fans can learn from guides to the various betting markets. That’s important given the mixed form of Barcelona lately, given they are usually always tipped to win games.
After a frustrating 1-1 draw at home against minnows Eibar, 2020 concluded with Barcelona parked at sixth position in La Liga, having won just seven of their opening 15 games this season, drawing four and losing four. Heading into 2021, form will need to improve significantly, if the team is to get back into the race for the title.
Joan Laporta and the presidential elections
“Build back better” was one of the key pledges that helped win Joe Biden the US Presidential Elections in 2020. For the candidates bidding to become the next president of FC Barcelona, they might want to take a leaf out of his book. Club members will get to vote on who gets the job, which could be one of the most crucial appointments in the history of this club.
The next president of the club will have no easy task. The financial situation is dire, to say the least, which has led to important players being sold in an attempt to balance the books. All the leading presidential candidates have contrasting views and proposals, about how they will steer this listing ship back into calmer waters.
Having already served as president between 2003 and 2010, during one of the most successful periods in the club’s history, Joan Laporta was the first to announce his candidacy. He also pulled off a PR masterstroke in December, with a huge advert for his candidacy filling the side of a tower building, literally just down the road from the Bernabeu home of Real Madrid.
“Looking forward to seeing you again”, was the wording of this advert, alongside an image of Laporta standing at over twenty stories high. Unsurprisingly, he is the front-runner to win the presidential elections, thanks to his provocative approach to publicity, while underlining key promises he insists will be kept, should he secure the majority vote.
For Laporta, the style of soccer for which Barcelona teams are famed is non-negotiable. He would also love to bring back Pep Guardiola as manager, although having recently penned a new deal at Manchester City until 2023, that could prove difficult. Providing he wins the election, that could lead Laporta to making an approach for Liverpool boss, Jurgen Klopp.