BARCELONA’S La Liga fixture against Las Palmas has gone ahead behind closed doors after political unrest in the Catalan city following today’s referendum.
Reports suggest Barcelona requested to postpone the game entirely over fears that there would not be adequate policing for the match.
Influential supporters group Grada d’animacio had also threatened to storm the pitch if the game went ahead.
It is believed that Barcelona’s request was turned down by La Liga and the Royal Spanish Football Federation.
Facing a potential three-point deduction as well as forfeiting the game, Barcelona made the last minute decision to play the match in an empty stadium.
A number of notable current and former Barcelona players had spoken out in support of today’s referendum.
Club legend Carles Puyol tweeted “Voting is democracy”, while Xavi, who won 31 trophies with Barcelona also spoke out.
“What’s happening in Catalonia is shameful. It is unacceptable that in a democratic country the people can’t vote,” he said.
“What’s happening in Catalonia is shameful. It is unacceptable that in a democratic country the people can’t vote,” said Carlos Puyol. Spain as a state, and many citizens, haven’t yet understood what democracy is. Open dialogue, referenda without central sate oppression would be a first much needed step.