September 27, 2023

Gerard Pique has said he will focus on his other business ventures before taking a run at the Barcelona presidency after retiring from professional football this week, BBC reported.

Pique went out with a tirade of expletives towards referee Jesus Gil Manzano on Tuesday, although he insisted the referee’s version of events is not entirely true and refutes some of the insults he is charged with saying.

The former Spain international also spoke about his respect for Real Madrid president Florentino Perez but expressed surprise at how he handled the failed launch of the European Super League last year.

“I’m sure it will appeal to me at one point but not right now,” Pique told Ibai Llanos on Twitch on Wednesday in a wide-ranging interview, the first since he announced his retirement from football last week.

“Not training every day will give me the opportunity to focus on other things. In the future, we will see, but I would like to help the club of my life maximise the potential it has.”

Pique, 35, is already the owner of second division side Andorra, who he said he can now give more attention to, and through his company Kosmos is also involved in various other projects, including the tennis tournament the Davis Cup and various esports endeavours.

The defender’s final game for Barca ended with a half-time red card against Osasuna on Tuesday, meaning he was unable to come on for what would have been the 617th and final appearance of his career with the Catalan club.

Gil Manzano’s report after the game detailed how Pique had launched a wave of abuse against him, but Pique said the referee’s explanation is incorrect and added that it was a teammate who shouted the most extreme insult.

“I went to talk to him about various moments in the game, saying that he had screwed us and, at that moment, he sent me off,” Pique said. “I had not said anything else at that moment and he dismissed me.

“His report is not right. I did not insult him or anything. Then, once sent off, I go into the dressing room, which is next to the referee’s dressing room, and a teammate shouts the phrase that is in his report. And the referee hears that next door and puts the words in my mouth.”

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