Barcelona have issued a statement denying reports of former president Sandro Rosell illegally buying a liver for Eric Abidal (pictured), who needed a transplant.
A stunning report in El Confidencial on Wednesday claimed Rosell – currently in jail for various tax frauds – could face charges for illegal organ trafficking.
38-year-old Abidal – a former defender at Barca – is now Director of Football at the club, and was diagnosed with liver cancer in 2011.
“FC Barcelona categorically denies any irregularity in relation to the transplant to which the current technical secretary of the first football team Eric Abidal received,” read the Barca statement.
“The Club deeply regrets the lack of rigor in the dissemination of information related to such a sensitive topic, and reaffirms its commitment to Eric Abidal and his foundation, to help improve the lives of children and young people affected by similar medical treatments.”
Rosell, 53, also stands accused of assisting to launder €15m via tax havens between the years of 2007 and 2011, and was arrested last year in relation to buying television rights for Brazil matches.
He was Barca president between 2010 and denies any wrongdoing, while he was also stand trial in a separate case linked to Neymar’s signing from Santos in 2013.