Villar: “Negreira wouldn’t last a minute if Sánchez Arminio or I had known about Barcelona’s payments”


The former president of the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) Ángel María Villar made it clear that he has “no idea” why FC Barcelona paid José María Enríquez Negreira, but that he “does not last a minute” as vice president of the Technical Committee Arbitration Court (CTA) if he or Victoriano Sánchez Arminio had “known”, while forcefully defending the honesty of the referees for whom he puts “both hands on the fire” and his own innocence in the ‘Soule case’.

“I have no idea what (FC Barcelona) was paying him for, it would be frivolous to give an opinion because a judge is investigating it, but if Victoriano or I had known, he wouldn’t last a minute in the committee. How would I know? “Shall I put a detective?” Villar remarked in an interview on ‘El Larguero’ on the SER network.

The former leader assured that Negreira “was not” in charge of appointing referees and that the Catalan “was one of the eight in the CTA who could decide on promotions”, while it was Villar himself who “presented to FIFA those who could be international referees”.

The Basque confessed “sadness” when this case came to light, “especially for Victoriano, who has been the best president in the history of the CTA, a beloved man, with authority, who modified the arbitration for the better.” “He was not aware that FC Barcelona was paying him,” he added, insisting that he does not know what the culé team was “looking for” by paying the vice president of the CTA.

“This is not good for Spanish football, also in an establishment that is the arbitration, which is the purely federative establishment, with very prepared people and where I sincerely believe that there is no corrupt person, with an extraordinary level, disciplined and always at the service of football,” he stressed.

For this reason, he puts “both hands on the fire” for the group and does not believe that Negreira “was corrupt because it has not yet been proven.” “Let the judge work. I think the payment is not correct, but the judge will have to decide, which is what counts, but this is the investigating judge, then it goes to the courtroom judge, who can say the opposite, we must wait,” he said.

“The referees are independent where they should be, on the grass, because they are great professionals. The rest are organizations and they do not rule over what they say, on the field only the rule of the game rules,” Villar stated.


Furthermore, the former president of the RFEF was asked about the ‘Soule case’. “I have had everything seized since 2017, my accounts and my assets, since 2017,” he admitted. “It was a sad day when they arrested me, I cried in the cell, overnight I went from being the president of the RFEF and vice president of FIFA and UEFA to being in the cell and being disqualified for something you have done without do it,” he added.

Villar recalled that of the five criminal actions he has faced, only this one of the ‘Soule case’ remains. “I hope they acquit me or file it because I have done nothing. I trust in my innocence and in justice,” he said, affirming that the Supreme Court “was wrong” when it ruled to disqualify him. “He didn’t apply any extenuating circumstance to me, having given my entire life to football,” he complained.

“They arrested me because they believe I did that, but another thing is that I did it,” he highlighted the charges of unfair administration, misappropriation and/or fraud, document falsification and corruption between individuals, while confirming that “there are invoices” which show that the eight million that LaLiga gave him and that its destination is unknown were to “dedicate it to arbitration.” “They have them in cars, we should not pay attention to interested leaks,” he demanded.

“Those 12 days in prison were not pleasant, but you immediately made friends with other prisoners. They are experiences of human beings and, despite the bad, it was a good experience. I think I will not go back because I have not done anything. For you It’s hard, but it’s harder for the people who love you and then you see who’s going to visit you and unfortunately for me it was more conspicuous by its absence,” Villar said.