The Barça Legends demonstrated on Friday that as well as being greats on the field of play, they are also great off it. Just a few hours before the veterans’ fixture against the Manchester United Legends, representatives of the team paid a visit to the children at Hospital Sant Joan de Déu.
Edgar Davids, Rivaldo, José Edmílson, Juliano Belletti, José Mari Bakero, Patrick Kluivert, Guillermo Amor and Miguel Ángel Nadal visited several floors of the hospital to spend time with the children and their families. The delegation was led by the first vice-president of FC Barcelona and its Foundation, Jordi Cardoner, along with the CEO of the FCB Foundation, Nacho Mestre. The meeting was a huge boost for the emotional wellbeing of the boys and girls, and ended with the whole group posing for a photo while making the warrior gesture, the symbol of the #paralosvalientes campaign to raise funds for the construction of the new Pediatric Cancer Center Barcelona.
This Friday’s game at the Camp Nou is very much a charity fixture, with all profits from ticket sales being used to support the pioneering cause that’s being organised by Hospital Sant Joan de Déu, the FC Barcelona Foundation and the Leo Messi Foundation.
The PCCD will be the largest oncology centre for children in Europe, incorporating all the latest technology in the fight against the disease and with the capacity for 400 patients a year, 30% more than Sant Joan de Déu can currently care for.
But 30 million euros are required to make it happen. The #paralosvalientes campaign featuring Leo Messi was set up last year, thanks to which much awareness has been raised regarding the importance of making donations, no matter how small.
Who are the Barça Legends?
The Barça Legends are the result of an FC Barcelona program to cherish the legacy of the players that have worn the first team shirt over the years. It is also another way to globalise the Barça name and values through its former players, as well as a means for stars to continue playing the game they love following retirement from professional duty. The idea behind the scheme is to arrange a series of matches and associated events in different parts of the world.