Barcelona’s hypothetical expulsion from Spanish football in the event of Catalonia breaking away from Spain would leave a huge hole in La Liga, Real Betis’s general manager said on Wednesday, and negatively impact on clubs such as his own.La Liga president Javier Tebas, a former member of a far right group and strong opponent of Catalan independence, has repeatedly threatened to banish 24-times champions Barcelona and all other teams in the region if Catalonia were to secede.In the latest sign of the Catalan independence drive impacting sport, Tebas has delayed negotiations to renew the league’s international television rights deal due to unrest in the wake of Catalonia’s disputed Oct. 1 independence vote.Betis general manager Ramon Alarcon said kicking out Barcelona would have huge ramifications on Spanish football and negatively affect clubs like his.”The unease that Catalan society could break from Spain affects every sector, including football, and the departure of Catalan teams would be a real shame because they are clubs with a lot of tradition,” Alarcon told Reuters in Madrid.In addition to Barcelona, Catalonia is home to two other La Liga clubs: Girona and Espanyol, as well as a host of clubs in lower leagues.”La Liga is not just Real Madrid and Barcelona. But if Barcelona left the other teams would have to work a lot harder to fill that gap if La Liga were to remain the best in the world.”Barcelona, which is owned by more than 140,000 club “members”, says it respects their diversity of opinion by not taking a position for or against independence, but supports the right of the people of Catalonia to decide their own future.advertisementReuters Photo On Oct. 1, the day of the banned referendum, the team played its match with Las Palmas at the Nou Camp behind closed doors, which club president Josep Maria Bartomeu said was to show opposition to police violence against voters.After the referendum, the club said in a statement it would not speculate on the future, but was “not planning for any other scenario than playing in the Spanish league. The club is competing in this competition and wants to win it.”Tebas has said Barcelona’s hypothetical departure would see the value of La Liga’s television rights drop by 20 percent.Alarcon has no doubt losing Barcelona would seriously damage the league’s brand and hurt other Spanish teams such as Betis.”Having a global brand like La Liga logically helps us, and obviously the success of Real Madrid and Barcelona helps the brand of Spain and La Liga,” he said.”PAINFUL SITUATION”Betis, Liga champions in 1935, are one of the best supported clubs in Spain, with 50,000 season ticket holders. They are ranked fourth, behind Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid in social media engagement.The Seville club are ninth in the standings after making their best start to a season since returning to the top flight in 2015 and beat champions Real 1-0 at the Santiago Bernabeu in September.Alarcon called Betis “a sleeping giant” and hopes they can harness their huge fan base to become one of the top teams in Spain again, but is wary of the impact the current political uncertainty in the country could have on his club.”Tebas has said that [Barcelona staying in the league if independence were declared] wouldn’t be legal, so logically it couldn’t happen. But sincerely I think Barcelona will stay in the Spanish league and we’ll come to an understanding over this situation, which is very painful for everyone.”
Gurugram: A person with a known criminal record was beaten to death on Saturday afternoon near Shivaji Nagar, when he stepped out of his home to meet his acquaintances. The man, identified by police as Deepak, allegedly had 11 criminal cases against him for assault and under the Arms Act. The police here said that the deceased was declared as a “bad character” by the Shivaji Nagar police station.The deceased, a resident of Shakti Park, Sector 10 A, was allegedly beaten to death with sticks by at least four men and the police claim that all four suspects have been identified. According to them, Akash, Praveen, Dhilu and Bhupi were part of the group that killed the 24-year-old Deepak. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderThe police said that at least two more suspects are yet to be identified and that they were all acquaintances of Deepak. Assistant commissioner of police (ACP), crime, Shamsher Singh said, “Deepak had an altercation with the suspects. He was severely beaten and succumbed to his injuries later on Saturday. We have identified four of the suspects. At least two more are unidentified.” Police officials added that after the incident, Deepak’s friends rushed him to a hospital in the city where he died while undergoing treatment for the past two days. The victim’s cousin said that he had left home saying that he would be back in 10 minutes. “The incident took place near our house. His friends got involved in a fight. Deepak tried to sort out the argument but he was beaten with sticks and rods.” A case has been registered against the suspects under sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 506 (criminal intimidation), 302 (murder), and 34 (common intention) of the IPC at the Shivaji Nagar police station.