Éric Abidal, who has battled with a tumour in his liver, has hit out at his former club Barcelona. Abidal left the Catalan club for Monaco this summer, but it is not happy with the way he was treated when he was ill.
“It’s hard to understand what Barça said in the last press conference,” he told L’Équipe. “It wasn’t about money, proof of which is the fact that the club didn’t pay me during the months I was ill.”
Abidal thinks things would have been different if Guardiola had still been in charge at Barcelona: “If Guardiola was still at Barcelona, I might have stayed. He is someone who really appreciates me and I keep in touch with him. He is a great coach. Today I’m lucky enough to have the trust of the Monaco manager and president. Touch wood, everything is fine. But it’s true, there was a time when I doubted myself.”
Barcelona have since released a statement to the clarify the following:
– Both parties confirm that the Club duly complied with the contractual commitments stipulated in the player’s contract.
– That in January of 2012, even though the player relapsed and underwent liver transplant surgery two months later, FC Barcelona offered Abidal a contract extension which included a substantial renewal bonus. The extension was signed.
– That in March of 2012, when Abidal’s disease reappeared, the Club did not execute its option to unilaterally rescind the player’s contract per the stipulation in the contract that Abidal signed. By mutual agreement, FC Barcelona and the player suspended the contract until Abidal was medically cleared to play. During this period Abidal continued collecting his agreed upon monthly payments and, upon his return to the first team, he received the proportional sum of his contract.
– In June of 2013, when his contract was due to expire, the Club and Abidal liquidated the contract.”