Soccer

Barcelona to cash in on stars

2011-12-29 17:09
Lionel Messi (AFP)

Barcelona - Barcelona's desire to boost revenue has the European champions charging the public to view an upcoming open training session.

Club members can invite three guests free of charge for the January 5 practice, but nonmembers will be charged €5 ($6.45) to watch Lionel Messi, Xavi Hernandez and Andres Iniesta hone their skills.

Under current president Sandro Rosell, the recent Club World Cup winners signed a €171 million ($230 million) deal with Qatar Foundation, which became the first paid sponsor to adorn the club's jersey.

The heavily indebted club has also embraced cost-cutting measures, eliminating its 80-year-old baseball team and slashing funding to 12 minority sports teams earlier this year.

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