Those who hoped for shattering revelations had to go their way. Much awaited by the sports community, the interview with the former doctor Eufemiano Fuentes, broadcast on Sunday March 28 on Spanish television, finally gave rise to statements as disturbing as evasive.
The central figure in the doping case “Puerto” in cycling in 2006, said in particular to have supplied products to improve his performance to the 1992 Olympic champion in the 1500m, the Spaniard Fermin Cacho. In this interview with the Sexta channel, the Spanish doctor, acquitted on appeal in 2016 by the Spanish justice, claims to have prescribed to the athlete “All that there was at that time”, especially “Plasma volume expanders, lactic acid reducers, natural testosterone or amino acid stimulants”.
“I want to qualify, we do not make a donkey a racehorse, the fact that at one point I helped, advised or prescribed a treatment to improve its performance does not mean that is why that he won what he won “, said Fuentes, for whom Cacho is a “Exceptional athlete and runner”.
“Medals would fall”
In the same interview, Fuentes said that if he revealed everything he knew about the Barcelona Games in 1992, “Medals would fall”, while adding: “That’s why I don’t want to say it”.
” I think so [il y a eu du dopage à Barcelone en 1992], but I can’t prove it “, he continued. “What I should say is that I know that medalists have used doping substances, but 28 years later, it is almost impossible to demonstrate, and it can be the subject of a complaint. By saying something that we cannot demonstrate, we can end up in court, and that I do not want ”.
Fuentes, who worked for the Spanish Athletics Federation, football clubs and cycling teams, revealed that he traveled to countries of the former communist bloc at the time.
“During these trips, I learned doping techniques. They were financed by the organizations with which I was under contract and one of them was the federation ” athletics, he said. “I used doping drugs before they were banned and when they did, I used other drugs so as not to cross the red line”, he added. “I am not a delinquent”, he defended himself.
A troubled role in football clubs
The former doctor also said he worked informally or was approached by some major football clubs in Spain. Confronted with a document published by the daily El Pais reporting a supposed occult accounting at Real Sociedad where suspicious payments and annotations appeared on his part, Dr. Fuentes defended himself in an ambiguous manner.
“I see this document and I recognize that this letter is mine,” he said. I was not the doctor for Real Sociedad but [à la vue de ce document], one can think that I advised them in one way or another ”.
In 2013, the former president of Real Sociedad – from January to December 2008 -, Inaki Badiola, said in an interview with the newspaper AS that his predecessors had a network for the purchase of doping products, “Eufemiano Fuentes could well be the supplier”. The management of Real Sociedad had rejected these accusations, as the president of the club between 2001 and 2005, José Luis Astiazaran.
Doctor Fuentes worked quite officially for the clubs of the Union Deportiva de Las Palmas, Universidad de Las Palmas and Elche, but “Unofficially I was sometimes hired or solicited [par des équipes], because there were no contracts, to advise their technicians, their doctors on the control, the recovery and the follow-up of their players ”. Fuentes also clarified that he had been approached by teams “Champions League level”, but that he hadn’t worked with any of them.
The doctor, 66 years old today, said again that he had had some contact with FC Barcelona but without follow-up. However, he remained more ambiguous when asked about a possible collaboration with Real Madrid.
“I’m not going to answer that question, but that doesn’t mean it was, I had to testify in a trial on this issue before and I said no, so [aujourd’hui] I’m telling you no ”, he replied to La Sexta journalist Jordi Evole. Eufemiano Fuentes referred to the defamation proceedings which resulted in The world had been condemned in 2014 by the Court of Appeal of Madrid to compensate Real for having mentioned in 2006 potential links between the doctor and the club.