La Liga

Rosell steps down as Barca president

Sandro Rosell resigns as Barcelona president
Sandro Rosell resigns as Barcelona president
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Sandro Rosell is stepping down as president of Barcelona a day after a judge agreed to hear a lawsuit accusing him of allegedly hiding the cost of the transfer of Brazil striker Neymar.

The decision was announced following an emergency board meeting with the club's vice presidents. Josep Maria Bartomeu, the current acting vice-president of sport, will take over until 2016.

"The success the club has had has also come along with difficult moments for myself and my family," Rosell said. "There have been threats and accusations which make you consider your position including the claim of misappropriation of funds and the court case. I've always stated that we acted correctly with the Neymar transfer."

The news comes a day after a judge agreed to hear a lawsuit brought by Jordi Cases, a Barcelona club member, over the cost of Neymar's signing. The Brazil international moved to the Nou Camp from Santos last summer in a €57m deal.

Cases alleges Rosell misappropriated funds by hiding the real cost of the transfer behind false contracts. Rosell was elected president in 2010 with more than 60% of the vote, replacing Joan Laporta.

Barcelona are currently level on points with Atletico Madrid at the top of La Liga with Real Madrid one point behind.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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