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Rosell's resignation - LIVE!
Hosted by Ben Hayward

Barcelona have called a press conference to explain their president's decision to quit and how the club will be run over the coming months. Follow the story live as it develops here...

20:40 GMT

23/01/2014

So that's about all for now on a very busy day for Barcelona.

Thanks for joining us and be sure to check in on the site tomorrow for all the reaction as Barca's new president, Josep Maria Bartomeu, answers media questions for the first time.

In the meantime, there's also plenty of further reading elsehwere on the site on Barca's current situation.

But for now, from me, as they say in Catalunya: Bona Nit!

20:30 GMT

23/01/2014

More from Bartomeu, who takes over the reins from his long-time friend and now former boss, Rosell:

"Thank you, Sandro. It has been an honour working with you all of these years and I would like to give thanks to my fellow colleagues on the board for allowing me to lead this project. The first message as president of Barca is to announce that this project will continue until 2016. We feel strong and we will stay true to the values that have guided us through these years."

20:25 GMT

23/01/2014

Rosell, visibly saddened by his imminent departure, shared an emotional embrace with Bartomeu at the press conference on Thursday.

20:20 GMT

23/01/2014

During Rosell's reign as president, Barcelona won nine trophies: two Liga titles, one Champions League crown, one Copa del Rey, three Spanish Supercopas, one Uefa Super Cup and one Club World Cup.

So even though he has proved unpopular with many fans, it hasn't been all bad.

Meanwhile, new president Bartomeu signed off with a positive message: "This is the best time in the club's history," he said.

20:10 GMT

23/01/2014

Rosell thanked the socios for their support during his time at the Catalan club, but claimed threats to his family forced him to stand down in the end.

"For some time now, my family and I have been receiving threats and attacks, and that made me think about whether I should continue putting my family in danger," he said.

20:05 GMT

23/01/2014

So Barca's board have 24 more hours to discuss what exactly they plan to tell the media and how they will answer the tricky questions on the club's future.

 

20:00 GMT

23/01/2014

"We are going to be very strict in the defence of our club against all the judicial and sporting authorities," Bartomeu also adds in reference to the Neymar case.

Barca will hold another press conference on Friday to address media questions on the club's future.

19:57 GMT

23/01/2014

Rosell also says the club have done nothing wrong in the Neymar negotiations, but claims that confidentiality is also important in football.

"This has been an unpleasant time for my family and that's why I have decided to tender by irrevocable resignation as president of FC Barcelona," he reveals.

As expected, Josep Maria Bartomeu takes over and agrees to continue with the same project until 2016.

"I want to encourage the socios to continue supporting us in future. All of our challenges are as valid as ever," he says. And he adds: "The future of the Camp Nou remains a priority - and we are playing for our future over the next few months."

19:53 GMT

23/01/2014

Rosell is now addressing the media:

"Good evening everybody," he says. "About four years ago, thousands of Barcelona socios came to the ballot boxes. It was an unforgettable day. That day 61 per cent of the votes went for the team I was in charge of it.

"Over these four years, we have acted as perfect Barcelona people. We have brought success on the field and overcome some external problems off the pitch.

"Barca is a worldwide entity admired around the world."

19:50 GMT

23/01/2014

In the meantime, former Barca president Joan Gaspart has said that Rosell should not step down.

"It's very honest of him, but there is no proof against him and I don't think he should resign," he said.

19:45 GMT

23/01/2014

Lots of well-known faces in the Barca press room, inlcuding Rosell's fellow board members, his wife, father, several of the Barca squad and sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta.

The emergency meeting lasted around two hours and 15 minutes but is now over and the press conference is imminent.

19:40 GMT

23/01/2014

"The consequences of all this could be unprecedented," Pilar adds.

"Rosell is not the first president to resign, but if Cases extends the complaint to the rest of the Barca board (as it is believed he will), Barcelona will struggle to overcome this current crisis and there will be yet more destruction at Camp Nou."

19:35 GMT

23/01/2014

Pilar Suarez, Goal Spain's Barcelona correspondent, has been following the situation closely.

"Rosell seems almost a victim of himself," she says. "His lack of charisma and his business-orientated vision of what 'Mes que un club' means have taken their toll.

"He has done much good, but there have been too many mistakes along the way and Barcelona fans have ultimately lost faith in his tenure."

19:25 GMT

23/01/2014

The board's meeting behind the scenes at Camp Nou has now finished and the press conference is finally due to start in the next few minutes.

19:15 GMT

23/01/2014

Bartomeu and economic vice-president Javier Faus were at Rosell's residence in Barcelona this morning to try and talk the 49-year-old into staying at the Catalan club.

However, his mind was made up and the two men will now play an important role in what is likely to be a transitional period for the Blaugrana.

19:10 GMT

23/01/2014

Legally, unless he resigns as well, vice-president Josep Maria Bartomeu will be obliged to succeed Rosell in the top job at Camp Nou.

However, Bartomeu may only assume an interim post until another man can be identified. Talks continue behind the scenes, but the Barca board are keen for Bartomeu to take over until 2016, when elections will be held.

19:05 GMT

23/01/2014

One man who has been quick to put the boot in on Rosell is former Barca president Joan Laporta, who recently called his former VP "neurotic and immature". Ouch!

Laporta has also said he may stand for re-election in 2016 and, given his enormous success between 2003 and 2010, many fans will be happy with that news.

19:00 GMT

23/01/2014

Earlier this week, Rosell and his board announced plans for a new €600m Camp Nou to be built on the current stadium site, with the idea set to be put to socios for a referendum in April.

What will happen with that proposed project is likely to be one of the questions put to the board this evening, among many others.

18:52 GMT

23/01/2014

Barca running a little late with this, which is hardly surprising given that it's such a momentous announcement for the Catalan club. Talks between board members continue behind the scenes as they prepare to face some tricky questions from the media.

Should start in around 15 minutes, Barca TV have just announced.

18:45 GMT

23/01/2014

Barcelona's last game under Rosell took place on Wednesday night: a 4-1 win at Levante in which Cristian Tello scored a hat-trick and Lionel Messi claimed three asists for the first time in his career.

The Argentine was playing his 400th game for the Catalan club, but now the Copa del Rey clash in Valencia will also be remembered for being the final fixture in Rosell's tenure.