Home Football Barcelona Deny Buying Abidal Illegal Transplant Liver

Barcelona Deny Buying Abidal Illegal Transplant Liver

Barcelona have denied that they illegally bought a transplant liver for their former defender Eric Abidal.

A Barcelona court admitted it had investigated a possible crime of organ trafficking for more than a year before deciding not to proceed because of a lack of evidence.

“FC Barcelona roundly deny any irregularity in the matter,” the club said in a statement in English on their website.

LYON, FRANCE – MAY 16: Eric Abidal walks out with the trophy ahead of the UEFA Europa League Final between Olympique de Marseille and Club Atletico de Madrid at Stade de Lyon on May 16, 2018 in Lyon, France. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

Abidal, a former France international, received a liver transplant in April 2012 at the Hospital Clinic in Barcelona and resumed his playing career a year later before retiring in 2014.

On Wednesday morning, online newspaper El Confidencial reported that a telephone tap of former club president Sandro Rosell, suggested that the club illegally acquired a liver for the player.

Rossell is due to face trial on charges of money laundering in connection with Brazilian TV rights sales and was also investigated for the deal which brought Neymar to Barcelona.

Abidal, who is 38, was named Barcelona’s sport director in June.

A statement posted on the club’s official website.

“The club are saddened by the lack of rigour in the spreading of such information about such a sensitive issue,” said the Barcelona statement.

The clinic and the Spanish organ donation organisation (ONT) both issued statements denying any wrong-doing, although ONT added that it had opened an internal investigation.

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About Marisa Kennedy

Marisa is a Digital Journalist with Pundit Arena. You can contact her at marisa@punditarena.com or on Twitter