Madrid: Joan Laporta, who presided over one of Barcelona’s most successful periods, has kicked off a cheeky game away from home as he took his re-election campaign to enemy territory by unveiling a colossal poster next to Real Madrid’s Santiago Bernabeu stadium.
Laporta posted a picture of the giant poster, covering a tower block under construction within view of the Bernabeu, on Twitter with the caption ‘Hello Madrid’.
The audacious poster references Laporta’s glorious reign as Barca president which came at their arch rival’s expense, bearing the slogan: “Looking forward to seeing you again.” Barca won four La Liga titles, two Champions Leagues and one Copa del Rey during Laporta’s reign, which ended in 2010 after he served the maximum two consecutive terms. They also won the treble for the first time in 2009, managed by Pep Guardiola.
Laporta is one of two leading candidates alongside Victor Font in Barcelona’s presidential election on January 24, which is being held two months early after Josep Maria Bartomeu resigned in October.
Laporta was elected as Barca president in 2003 after promising to sign David Beckham, who eventually joined Real Madrid, with the Catalans instead recruiting Ronaldinho. He had a brief stint in Catalan politics after leaving Barca, serving as a member of the regional parliament between 2010 and 2012.
He launched a failed bid to become president again in 2015, losing to incumbent Bartomeu, whose campaign was buoyed by the club winning a second treble a month earlier.
Now his cheeky appearance in the giant poster will be sure to endear him to the Barcelona faithful ahead of the crucial voting next month.