Joan Laporta believes Pep Guardiola would make a “great” president for Barcelona in the future and believes the club’s fans would be “reckless” to re-elect Josep Maria Bartomeu for the role this week.
Guardiola was made Barca coach during Laporta’s reign and enjoyed an unprecedented spell of success at the club, guiding them to a European and domestic treble in his first season.
The Bayern Munich coach has since voiced his support for Laporta’s campaign in Saturday’s presidential election and the 52-year-old has said Guadiola will be welcome back at Camp Nou in the future.
And Laporta admits that he has spoken to the former midfielder about a return and believes it will happen in some capacity in the future.
“I’ve spoken to Pep Guardiola about him returning,” he told Radio Marca. “He’s under contract with Bayern, but he’s a free spirit who will always be linked to the club.
“He could be a great president in the future.”
Laporta and Bartomeu are the front runners heading into Saturday’s election, although the former feels he has the best chance of winning. He also stressed that re-electing his rival would be a bad idea for Barca after the 50-year-old, who replaced Sandro Rosell at the helm in January 2014, played a role in the Neymar transfer which has led to a legal case being opened up against the club.
“We’ve turned the polls on their heads. We’re ahead, with 36 per cent of voter intention,” he added.
“It would be reckless to have Bartomeu as president after conducting a poll to sell Lionel Messi, and when Barca have been prosecuted for the first time in history over the Neymar case,” he told Radio Marca.
“Bartomeu and Rosell are two sides of the same coin. They stand there talking about what it means to be a club when they’re there to protect the interests of the sponsors Qatar, which is a ridiculous link that does not make sense financially with being the first time that Barca have had a sponsor on their shirt.
“If I’m president, Luis Enrique stay. He’s improved Barca’s style of play and added a certain degree of versatility to it.