Mascherano: Barca take care of La Masia
The Argentine midfielder has jumped to the defence of the club's youth system after their appeal against a transfer ban was rejected
Javier Mascherano has defended Barcelona after the club's appeal against a transfer ban was rejected by Fifa.
Barca appealed a decision from April after Fifa found them to be in breach of article 19 of the regulations, which states international transfers of players are only permitted if the player is over the age of 18, bar three exceptions.
The Catalan club were found guilty of breaking the rule in the case of 10 minor players and were also found guilty of further infringements. As a result, they have been banned from buying players for two transfer windows.
While Mascherano didn't want to comment heavily on the legal debate, he insisted Barca have done nothing but great things for the young players they have introduced to the youth academy.
"It is a very delicate situation for me to be giving opinions on because I don't know the issue of the law in any great depth," the Argentine said at a press conference.
Fifa confirmed Barcelona transfer ban
"We are dedicated to football and we try to do it in the best way. In a personal manner, I can say that the club have worked and taken good care of the guys in La Masia - that is what you can see.
"I know that today many children have passed through the club. One sees that the club have given them the best quality of life here. That is what I can say, the rest is down to legal issues."
The 30-year-old also touched on his future at the club after signing a four-year contract and says he will be ready to fill in wherever Luis Enrique needs him.
Mascherano continued: "I came here four years ago and my role has not changed. I must be a team player and go wherever the coach or the team need me to play.
"That will always remain the case because it is my way of thinking. The coach knows he can count on me for anything and it was an easy decision for me to commit.
"I told the club I would leave if they needed me to, but they decided it was best for both parties that I stayed and here I am."