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Barcelona to play in French league?

World Leagues

Barcelona, Spain – If Catalan voters back an independence drive in Sunday's regional election then Barcelona football club may consider its options – including competing in the French league, according to city mayor Javier Trias.

Trias, who backs secession by the eastern region from crisis-hit Spain, said Saturday that the four-times European champions could continue to play on in the Spanish league or “perhaps, in the French league.”

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BARCELONA, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 17: Alex Song of FC Barcelona (C) celebrates with his teammates after scoring his team's second goal during the La Liga match between FC Barcelona and Real Zaragoza at Camp Nou on November 17, 2012 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

“We do not have the possibility of a competitive league for Catalonia, population just over seven million,” said Trias.

“There would be very few teams and we would have to join another league – we could adhere to the Spanish league or perhaps the French league,” he told AFP.

Asked if the club itself had a political facet Trias noted that that had been more the case in previous years.

“Years back, in the time of the (Franco) dictatorship, the club was a reference point for everyone in Catalonia and it was said that Barca was more than a club.”

He also noted that the club “represent a particular style and way of doing things which make us proud.” – Sapa-AFP

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