Barcelona VP Carles Vilarrubi Resigns After Decision to Play Las Palmas Match

Fans raise pro-independence flags and banners during a Spanish La Liga match between Girona and Barcelona at Montilivi stadium in Girona Spain

In an utterly shocking and disgraceful turn of events, FC Barcelona were forced to play the La Liga game against Las Palmas while Catalan voters went to the polling stations to vote on independence referendum.

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has defended his decision to play Sunday's match at the Camp Nou behind closed doors, saying images of the empty stadium seen across the world sent a message.

However, with less than 30 minutes until the match was due to start, Barca confirmed it would go ahead, but behind closed doors, despite the thousands of supporters waiting outside Camp Nou.

In a strongly-worded statement Barca condemned the actions of the police "to prevent its citizens exercising their democratic right to free expression".

The half-time break saw Valverde make some changes with Iniesta and Rakitic coming on and it wasn't soon before Barcelona edged ahead when Busquets was on hand to glance home a corner from Messi.

On the field Barcelona changed into their standard kit before kick-off and subsequently dispatched Las Palmas without a huge degree of fuss.

"La Liga's refusal to cancel the game and play it another day... would mean the loss of six points for the team", added Bartomeu.

For Las Palmas, the defeat leaves them routed in 17th place, just above the relegation zone.

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Las Palmas players wore Spanish flags on their shirts to show support for a unified Spain.

"It would have been a six-point loss - three for not playing and three as a punishment", he said.

This goal thanks to the great service Denis Suarez who thrust the breakthrough bait on Messi who escaped the offside trap.

Sturgeon says that "regardless of views on independence, we should all condemn the scenes being witnessed".

By early evening, Catalan officials said 465 people in the region had been injured in clashes linked to the referendum, according to newspaper El Pais.

Las Palmas indicated that it opposed the breakup of Spain, sending its players onto the pitch with small Spanish flags sewn onto their jerseys.

"It's a question which only comes up in the case of an independent Catalonia and we are not there yet", he said.

"It is unacceptable that in a democratic country people can not vote", added Xavi. "I understand that there are supporters who do not understand that decision".

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