The Liga de Futbol Prodesional (LFP) and Espanyol have condemned recent insults directed towards Gerard Pique and his family in the recent meetings between Barcelona and Espanyol, with a complaint being sent to the Spanish FA, as reported by Marca.

Pique has been public enemy number one when it comes to the Catalan derby in recent years, with the defender a common subject for insults from the crowd. 

The player was particularly incensed in 2016 clash after a large banner was displayed disrespecting Pique’s long term partner Shakira. 

Espanyol claim this issue of the banner was taken very seriously and banned those responsible, but insults were again directed to Pique during Sunday’s clash. 

In relation to the 2016 incident, the club said: ”We deeply regret and do not share the expressions of those fans, both in terms of chants and banners. We didn’t know they existed, we felt cheated.

”The banners did not enter the stadium, they were made inside and we read them as they were leaving.”

Espanyol v Barcelona - La Liga

However, after scoring a late equaliser in the 1-1 draw, Pique – ?who had also recently provoked the Espanyol faithful with his now infamous ‘Cornella’ comments – celebrated by raising his finger to his lips in a sign of silence causing further backlash.

The LFP has now sent a complaint to the committee of the Spanish FA and the Anti Violence Commission for the events surrounding Pique in the Catalan derby and with insults about Shakira as well as the player himself reportedly flying from the home fans, questions were posed as to whether these were the same section of supporters who displayed the banner two years prior. 

While many saw Pique’s ‘shush’ celebration as deliberately provocative, Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu was quick to defend the centre-back’s actions.

He said in an interview with ?Mundo Deportivo: ”It was a celebration that many players have done when they have scored, It is not the first time that a player has silenced a stadium.

It is normal, players have done it at the Camp Nou and in other stadia. It is a normal celebration of an important goal that means we equalised a few minutes from the end. Pique explained that he was fed up with insults aimed at his partner and his son.”

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