File photo: October 1, 2017 Barcelona’s Lionel Messi celebrates scoring a goal with team mates in front of the empty stands as the game is being played behind closed doors (Reuters)
Barcelona have moved to restructure their board after six directors resigned last week in protest at the way the club is being run, the Spanish side have said.
Two of the club's four vice presidents, Emili Rousaud and Enrique Tombas, were among those to announce their resignation in a letter to fans published in Spanish media on Friday.
They were joined by directors Silvio Elias, Josep Pont, Jordi Calsamiglia and Maria Texidor.
The departing directors had criticised the club's handling of a social media scandal and expressed doubts about the board's ability to handle the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has led to a 70% players' pay cut.
Barcelona said the board had approved the appointments of Jordi Moix as vice president for economic and equity, Pau Vilanova as institutional vice president, Oriol Tomas as vice president of the commercial area, Marta Plana as board secretary, and David Bellver as treasurer.
"Javier Bordas will be the manager responsible for the football first team, while Xavier Vilajoana will be in charge of Barca B, the youth teams and women's football," Barcelona said in a statement https://www.fcbarcelona.com/en/club/news/1655431/fc-barcelona-communique#.
The club added they would take legal action against Rousand for allegations that "seriously damage the institution's image".
Joan Blade, who is responsible for the club's basketball teams, would also now manage Barcelona's control and transparency committee, the club added.
The outgoing directors had asked president Josep Maria Bartomeu to call presidential elections and voiced "displeasure" over the club's hiring of a third party, I3 Ventures, earlier this year to monitor social media coverage of Barca.
Bartomeu has denied accusations the company created social media accounts to smear future presidential candidates, and former and current players but rescinded the club's contract with the firm anyway. I3 has also denied any wrongdoing.
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