UPDATE: FC Barcelona wins in silence as Catalan referendum descends into chaos
The legendary soccer club FC Barcelona opted to play Sunday's match against Las Palmas before an empty stadium as the city and its Catalonian region descended into chaos (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/chaos-clashes-and-hundreds-of-reported-injuries-as-catalans-go-to-the-polls-in-vote-that-could-split-spain-2017-10-01) over an independence referendum that the Spanish Constitutonal Court had ruled illegal. Leo Messi scored two goals in a 3-0 league win over the Canary Islands side. FC Barcelona decided just 25 minutes before kickoff to play behind closed doors at the 99,000-plus-capacity Camp Nou, according to a BBC report (http://www.bbc.com/sport/football/41459838), after the La Liga rejection of a club request that the match be postponed in light of the atmosphere outside the ground, which by then reportedly featured a violent national-police crackdown on demonstrators and voters. The league, according to the BBC report, was believed to have threatened a penalty against league-table leader Barcelona equivalent to a stripping away of two victories for a unilateral decision to postpone the match.
-Tim Rostan; 415-439-6400; AskNewswires@dowjones.com
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