After the initial announcement just over a month ago, the day Racing Club fans had been waiting for arrived on Monday. Blanquiceleste, the company who ran the club from 2001 until early June, were signed out of existence by the judges presiding over their case yesterday. Meanwhile, a little to the west of Avellaneda, in Ezeiza, Sergio Batista’s got to find another defender after Internazionale of Milan refused to release Nicolás Burdisso for the Olympic Football Tournament.
‘Racing has ceased to exist’ is a phrase etched onto Racing fans’ memories since 2000, when the former club was declared bankrupt and later passed into the hands of Blanquiceleste S.A., a private company set up to keep the club going. Today, the blue half of Avellaneda will be hearing similar words with a happier feeling, as Hector García Cuerva announced: ‘Blanquiceleste has ceased to exist.’ The club once again returns to being an Asociación Civil, albeit one that will be run for now by proxy. Members’ elections will be set up to take place in March or April next year.
An added bonus was given out when, hours after judge Gorostegui signed the forms to confirm that Blanquiceleste and Fernando De Tomaso were no longer in charge, the Commercial Judge No. 20 signed papers to legally break up Blanquiceleste S.A. The company had petitions for money owed to former managers and players, but the biggest payback will have to be to Racing themselves: some AR$15 million (US$5 million).
At the selección‘s training camp in Ezeiza, Sergio Batista’s got some negotiating of his own to do. Italian champions Inter gave notice to the AFA on Monday that they won’t be allowing Nicolás Burdisso to participate as one of the three over-age players in the Olympic Football Tournament, owing to their own high number of injured defenders at present. Batista has until the 27th July to name a replacement, though ideally he’ll want to get it done as soon as possible, to allow the lucky man to train with the rest of the squad.
With Martín Demichelis and Fabricio Coloccini already denied permission to travel by their clubs, Batista will have to cast his net a little further afield. Real Madrid have been approached about Gabriel Heinze, and there are of course two defenders already on the ‘reserves’ list: Nicolás Pareja and Emiliano Insúa.