As a result of the Catalan Independence movement from the rest of Spain, FC Barcelona may be forced to leave La Liga following the October 1st Catalan referendum.
FC Barcelona was founded in 1899 and have always stressed their Catalan identity, officially adopting the local language as early as 1910.They endorsed a bid by the Catalan regional government to hold a referendum from Spain, which was ruled illegal by the Spanish national court.
During Barcelona’s last champions league match against Juventus on the 12th of September, Barcelona fans held up a banner reading “Welcome the Catalan republic.” This political message is currently banned from football stadiums under Spanish law. The big question is will the Spanish constitution allow Barcelona to continue to play in La Liga? Xavier Tebas the La Liga president says, “Yes they will have to leave unless the Spanish government passes new legislation in parliament to allow the three Catalan teams to stay including FC Barcelona, RCD Espanyol and Girona FC.” Tebas is an outspoken critic of the independence movement and said that, “Barcelona would lose millions and certainly would not remain one of the top clubs in Europe.”
Real Madrid’s head coach Zinedine Zidane says that, “I can’t imagine a Spanish league without Barcelona. As a football fan, I just can’t see it.” Barcelona out of La Liga is just as much of a threat to Real Madrid as it is to the two clubs rivalry that keeps La Liga so competitive and exciting.