Rosell: Barcelona value spirit of fair play above winning trophies

The Blaugrana supremo insists that while ensuring silverware is a priority, the responsibility of instilling moral values in their players is more important
By Mohamed Haji Khani in Dubai

Sandro Rosell has claimed that the blueprint to Barcelona's success in recent years is their duty to play fairly rather than winning at all costs.

The Blaugrana have lifted three La Liga titles in the last four years and were crowned European champions twice in the same period. In the president's eyes, their trophy sweep has been the product of implementing moral values and a no-nonsense philosophy within the Camp Nou set-up.

"I'm very happy with our investment in La Masia," Rosell told "My happiness increases when I see our starting XI made up of only players from our youth academy.

"Our focus goes beyond technique and tactics, we want our players to become good people and be respectful humans.

"They have to be united and hard-working. For our club, winning titles is not as important as fair play because our players are role models for children all over the world.

"If any of our players don’t follow our values well enough, we will not co-operate with them. This shows that football is not our priority."

Rosell then downplayed Barcelona's role in the fight for Catalan independence before adding that the health of coach Tito Vilanova is paramount to the side's cause.

"Politics should not mix with sport," he added. "We, as a club, distance ourselves from politics. We don’t mix the case for Catalunya with football.

"In my opinion, today belongs to the future. Now, the most important thing for us is Tito’s health."