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Barcelona's Pique booed in Madrid after voting in referendum

Monday, October 02, 2017 - 01:30

Catalonia's independence referendum has made its way onto the soccer field with fans of Spain's national team targeting defender Gerard Pique. Nathan Frandino reports.

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Boos and jeers followed Catalan soccer star Gerard Pique onto the field on Monday, a day after he voted in Catalonia's controversial independence referendum. The Barcelona defender was in Madrid to train with the Spanish national team. The open training session drew hundreds of Spain supporters who whistled at Pique and held signs, calling for his exit from the team. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) SPAIN FAN, VICTOR, TALKING ABOUT GERARD PIQUE, SAYING: "I think that he should have never come here today, now that he has left the training session it should be forever, for good. I don't want him back anymore." The referendum, which the Spanish central government in Madrid called illegal, ended with overwhelming support for independence, though most opponents boycotted the vote altogether. Clashes with riot police left more than 840 people injured. Pique, who has won a World Cup and two European Championships with Spain, voted in the referendum... and in a tearful news conference later on Sunday said he was open to leaving the national team. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) BARCELONA SOCCER PLAYER GERARD PIQUE SAYING: "If a coach or any official of the Federation thinks I am a problem or disruptive, I don't have a problem with stepping down and leaving Spain's national team before 2018." The training session on Monday ended prematurely, with Pique and the team leaving after just 25 minutes.

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Barcelona's Pique booed in Madrid after voting in referendum

Monday, October 02, 2017 - 01:30