Rosell: Barca have no choice but to end under-seven policy

The Blaugrana president has said that the decision to modify the club's current policy of admitting youngsters into the stadium for free was taken out of his hands
Barcelona president Sandro Rosell says that he was powerless to prevent the club from ending its policy of allowing children up to the age of seven free admission into Camp Nou.

The Liga champions had a long-standing tradition of granting free entry to children under the age of seven, who were permitted to sit on their parent's lap for the duration of the contest.

However, due to a number of safety concerns, the club have modified the rule which will now see every supporter present inside Camp Nou pay for their ticket from October 26 onwards, starting with the visit of Real Madrid.

And while Rosell expressed sorrow at the decision having benefitted from the policy during his youth, the 49-year-old insisted that the implementing the new rule was the lesser of two evils.

"I am the first to be against this decision but from the point of view of responsibility, this is our obligation," he told Catalunya Radio.

"We have taken many turns but in the end, we all prefer a headline saying ‘Rosell denies entry to a child’ over one saying ‘Rosell has killed a child’.

"I had gone to the Camp Nou with my father when I was seven. It is a tradition that has been there a lifetime.

"No child under the age of seven can understand the measure. If I was a seven-year-old boy, I would not agree with the club.

"It is the responsibility that we have to assume and we will assume it. We will study alternatives, but it is clear that in games of high risk, we have no choice."