Despite the vast majority of football clubs being owned by either pretentious millionaires or a consortium of rich shareholders with a visible leader, Barcelona is a club in which the future is decided by its 144,000 members.
Given the institution’s democratic nature, a new president is granted a mandate of six years to lead the club’s fortunes. Having said that, the president has the power to call for an early election if he so wishes -- which is exactly what happened this time round, with Josep Maria Bartomeu anticipating the election a whole year due to the crisis that exploded in his hands in early January 2015 and resulted in the sacking of sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta, who was to blame for many controversial signings and strange decisions.
Having already collected at least 2534 signatures in their favour at this point, it has been confirmed that Josep Maria Bartomeu, Joan Laporta, Toni Freixa, Agustí Benedito and Joan Batiste have now officially become candidates for the presidential election which will be held at the Camp Nou on July 18th -- and they are not just talking about big transfers; they have also made La Masia an absolute priority.
READ my full "Bartomeu to edge Laporta, Benedito in race for Barcelona presidency" column for Weloba here.
It's your turn
Who would you vote for in the Barcelona elections? Can Bartomeu do a better job than Laporta? I'd love to hear your views. Share your comments with our community in the box below.