Another Argentine is set to move to Europe – but for a change this won’t affect the domestic game unduly. César ‘Chelito‘ Delgado, formerly of Rosario Central, has for the last four years been impressive for Mexico’s Cruz Azul, and now looks set for the move across the Atlantic, probably to Benfica of Portugal. River Plate, meanwhile, finally seem ready to unveil their new boss – and as expected, it’ll be Diego ‘El Cholo‘ Simeone. Estudiantes fans don’t have it all bad though – you may have lost your boss, but you’re keeping Juan Sebastián Verón…
Agreement has been reached between the clubs, although an exact fee apparently still has yet to be agreed, and Delgado has agreed terms with Eusebio’s former club for a four-and-a-half year contract. Greek side Olimpiakos were also an interested party, and this could give us some clue as to the size of the transfer fee – Olimpiakos reportedly had a bid of €9.5 million turned down earlier this year. Assuming the Benfica deal goes through, Delgado will be joining up with his compatriot – and fellow ex-Central player – Ángel Di María.
Back in Argentina, Diego Simeone is closer and closer to being officially made River’s new manager. His resignation from his post at Estudiantes still has to be ratified, as his old club’s board have been dragging their feet somewhat since his departure. Simeone is already acting and thinking as River manager in all but a public sense, but Estudiantes have had other things on their mind – perhaps mainly the contract extension finally signed by Juan Sebastián Verón, which confirms he won’t be moving to the States after all.
Verón expressed regret at Simeone’s exit but expressed his own desire to stay, ‘for the people and for my countrymen… the difference is that I’m a fan of Estudiantes.’ La Brujita‘s continued presence in the side will surely make it easier for Estudiantes to attract a decent replacement for Simeone, and also ensures that the magnificent shot he scored against Olimpo last Friday shouldn’t be his last for the club he’s supported since childhood.