Pep Guardiola Claims He Would Not Have Played Barcelona Match After Referendum Disruption

?Former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola has claimed that he would not have gone ahead with Sunday’s highly charged La Liga game against Las Palmas were he still in charge at Camp Nou, coming after police violently clashed with Catalan citizens over the region’s independence referendum earlier in the day.

The referendum had been declared ‘illegal’ by Spain’s central government, leading to police attempts to break up and disrupt the voting process.

Barcelona officially condemned the actions of the authorities and the game eventually went ahead behind closed doors after calls for it to be called off completely. 

Las Palmas, an offshore club from the Canary Islands, added their own charge to the affair by wearing Spanish flags on their shirts.

“I would not have played the match,” Guardiola told Catalunya Radio and RAC1.

“And if we did have to play it, then not behind closed doors.”

Unsurprisingly, Guardiola, who told press in England ahead of the referendum that he submitted a postal vote, condemned the authorities as well.

“Spain will try to cover up the reality, but the rest of the world’s media will show it,” he said.

“I read in El Pais that they were saying it was the police officers who were injured. Injured by what? By votes? It has been the opposite as they have injured people with rubber bullets, which are illegal in Catalonia. They broke one woman’s fingers.”

Barcelona v Las Palmas - La Liga

The Manchester City boss described some images that emerged from the day as ‘irrefutable’ and called on Spanish prime minister Mariano Rajoy to answer questions because “he remains the prime minister of all Spaniards”, including Catalans.