Spanish giants refute links to doctor

December 7, 2006

PARIS, December 7 (Primera Liga) - Real Madrid and Barcelona have both moved to deny any suggestion that they have worked with controversial Spanish doctor Eufemiano Fuentes.

The doctor, who is being investigated in a judicial inquiry into doping in cycling, claims he has worked with unnamed Primera Liga football clubs.

Barcelona and Real both deny any kind of link with Fuentes.

Real on Thursday put a statement on club website www.realmadrid.com.

It read: 'Real Madrid want to deny in a forthright way any link, direct or indirect, of the club's medical services with Dr Eufemiano Fuentes.'

The club went on to say that it considered its record exemplary in its 104-year history while reserving the right to take legal action.

Barcelona posted a statement on website saying: 'FC Barcelona categorically deny the information published today Thursday by the French paper Le Monde in relation to a supposed and non-existent use of the services of the Dr Eufemiano Fuentes with the club and a supposed and non-existing specific link with the club's preparation plans last season.

'Furthermore, Barcelona reserves legal means it considers convenient in the defence of the club's interests.'

Fuentes did not name the clubs he has worked with in an interview with Le Monde.

Fuentes had told the paper: 'I have worked with Primera Liga and Segunda Division Spanish clubs.

'I have worked with several clubs at the same time, sometimes directly with the footballers themselves, sometimes sharing my knowledge with the club doctors.'

Asked directly by Le Monde if he had worked with Real Madrid and Barcelona, Fuentes replied: 'I cannot reply. I have been threatened with death.

'I have been told if I say certain things myself or my family could have severe problems.

'I have been threatened three times and I am not going to be threatened a fourth time.'

Fuentes also revealed he had had an offer from abroad, saying: 'I was given an offer by an Italian club but I rejected it.'