Espanyol report Pique, Busquets and Barcelona to RFEF
Espanyol have asked the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) to investigate comments made by Barcelona defender Gerard Pique in the aftermath of Thursday's Copa del Rey semi-final, while also filing complaints against his team-mate Sergio Busquets and alleged offensive chanting from Barca fans.
Goals from Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi saw Ernesto Valverde overturn a first-leg deficit and close out a 2-1 aggregate triumph at Camp Nou, booking a semi-final tie against Valencia at the expense of their local rivals.
Speaking to reporters afterwards, Pique chose to prolong the inter-Catalan argument by referring to Barcelona's opponents as "Espanyol de Cornella" as opposed to their full time of Espanyol de Barcelona – inferring Espanyol are no longer truly a team of Barcelona since moving to the Catalan municipality of Cornella de Llobregat.
In a statement released on their official website, Espanyol confirmed they had approached RFEF's Anti-Violence Commission to request an investigation into Pique, Busquets and sections of the Camp Nou support.
"In relation to the statements of Pique Bernabeu, RCD Espanyol would like to provide the Commission with the following information for its investigation," a statement read.
"Just as Sant Adria del Besos hosts our Sports City Dani Jarque, Cornella de Llobregat and El Prat de Llobregat are the cities whose municipal terms host the RCDE Stadium. Both cities belong to the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona and stand out as two of the cities with the most population in Catalonia, mostly working and struggling families, with family roots throughout Spain and in other countries, which are and always will be an example of integration and progress and a pride for our land.
"We consider that any demonstration in a clearly derogatory tone towards these cities, such as those pronounced and reiterated by Mr. Pique Bernabeu towards the city of Cornella."
Bon dia des de Cornellà-El Prat, pericos! Moltes gràcies a equip i afició per tanta emoció i bons moments en aquesta Copa del Rei. Ens vam quedar a només un gol del somni de les semis. Seguim endavant i a per totes a @LaLiga! #RCDE #MeravellosaMinoria pic.twitter.com/lB2yvaLeKH
— RCD Espanyol (@RCDEspanyol) January 26, 2018
Busquets told reports Barca had "put things in their place" and criticised Espanyol for celebrating "as if they had passed the round" in the first leg.
Espanyol responded by observing it was "inconceivable that an athlete declares that a rival cannot celebrate a victory, and added: "We consider that the declarations of Busquets Burgos are totally contrary to the values of respect in football and can be generators of violence and intolerance."
Additionally, Espanyol alleged Barcelona fans made "numerous xenophobic chants" during the game.
Barcelona have been contacted by Omnisport for their reaction to the allegations.