Las Rozas (Madrid), March 2. The president of the Technical Committee of Referees (CTA), Luis Medina Cantalejo, assured that “there is no proof or proof that can say that a referee is dishonest” and explained that the information collected within the framework of the internal investigation were transferred to the department integrity related to the Negreira case.
“Who has the greatest interest in this being clarified and that if there are culprits that they are punished with the greatest rigor, we are the arbiters, if there has been something attributable to people who at the time belonged to this house and took advantage of their position which they took advantage of and “had actions outside the Spanish arbitration procedure. But what does all this have to do with us? It has been criminalized, there is a social climate that is anti-referee,” he said.
Medina Cantalejo insisted that “the damage has been done” and that the referees must continue to work, continue to train, carry out the matches and “make themselves available to the institutions, both to the integrity department of the Federation as well as the public prosecutor’s office or any entity that requests it.
“WHAT HAPPENED IS A SHAME AND YOU NEED TO CLEAN IT UP”
“I am the grandson, son and father of a referee. Neither I nor I are corrupt nor you are corrupt. What happened is a disgrace and it needs to be cleaned up. We will fight until the end so that everyone stays in their place”, added Medina Cantalejo, who explained that only one referee, whose identity he did not reveal, did not send the information requested within the framework of the internal investigation carried out by the CTA and the RFEF.
The president of the CTA appeared this Thursday with the secretary general of the RFEF, Andreu Camps, at the Ciudad del Fútbol, in the presence of a large number of active and retired referees, to report on his actions after learning that the Barcelona Public Prosecutor’s Office is investigating a company of former committee vice-president José María Enríquez Negreira for an alleged crime of corruption between private individuals, for payments of 1.4 million Barcelona between 2016 and 2018 .
Medina explained that the day after the announcement of the prosecutor’s investigation, he called all the referees together and asked them to answer a series of questions, such as whether they had contact with Enríquez Negreira or his son. before 2018 and after, and regretted that this leaked to the press.
“It was time to show face and unite. Unfortunately, there is always someone who prefers selfish, personalistic, traitorous positions and that same afternoon it was published in the media. The next day, everyone sent the questionnaire except one It was already called the date “He did not answer today”, he said, without giving details of the answers received and without answering the question whether the only one who hasn’t answered is Catalan Xavier Estrada Fernández, now a VAR referee, who filed an individual complaint against Enríquez Negreira and his son.
The president of the referees clarified that during the vice-presidency of Enríquez Negreira at the CTA, between 1994 and 2018, he had no salary and his powers were to communicate to the referees the groups in which they were, the promotions and the relegations, and rejected outright after being given hints to referee one way or the other during his 11-year career.
“I SET MY HANDS ON THE FIRE FOR MY COMPANIONS OF THEN, THOSE OF TODAY AND FOR SÁNCHEZ ARMINIO”
“I put my hands on fire for my colleagues then and the referees now, if something comes out that justice falls on them. Also for (Victoriano) Sánchez Arminio (former president of the CTA) he was the president of many referees , if he had had the slightest suspicion, he would have put him on the street. He is very annoyed, it was his vice-president. We will be bad, good or regular, but never something like that, “said he added.
Medina Cantalejo pointed out that Sánchez Arminio supported the referees in the act this Thursday, like his predecessor in power, Carlos Velasco Carballo, who was present at the Ciudad del Fútbol, and answered a question about the influence that this situation can have Barcelona in arbitration and the fact that Barça has not been sanctioned for two years.
“If they haven’t been whistled, it will be because in the opinion of the referees there won’t be any, period. Barcelona must continue to referee, tonight, and those who will go with it. honesty because the flag and doing your best, although historically the referees have been the scapegoats. The other day, during a pre-youngest game, I heard a father say that we had to do like Barça to buy the referees”.
After the reading of a manifesto in defense of the group by the Murcian referee José María Sánchez Martínez, Medina Cantelejo, reiterated his wish that with the investigation “there is no doubt”. “Let the speculation cease and the honesty of a person without any evidence be questioned. This war is not going with us,” he concluded.