Josep Lluis Nunez. AFP

Former Barcelona president Josep Lluis Nunez has died aged 87, the Catalan club announced on Monday.

“FC Barcelona expresses its pain after the death of Josep Lluis Nunez (1931-2018), president of the club between 1978 and 2000,” Barca wrote in a statement.

Advertise With Us

During his tenure as the club’s head, he recruited several star players over his tenure, from Argentina’s Diego Maradona to Brazilian duo Rivaldo and Ronaldo.

But it was in 1988 that he made one of his most influential signings, by appointing Holland’s Johan Cruyff as coach, prompting a radical overhaul of Barcelona’s playing identity.

Under Cruyff, the Catalan club won four La Liga titles in a row, from 1991 to 1994, and their first European Cup in 1992.

Nunez had also established La Masia in 1979, the club´s training centre, now famous for bringing through the likes of Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta, Xavi Hernandez, Carles Puyol and Pep Guardiola.

Owner of the construction group and hotels business Nunez I Navarro, Nunez spent a few weeks in prison between 2014 and 2015 after he was sentenced to two years and two months for bribing Spanish tax officials.