Having fallen slightly behind over the weekend, it’s worth mentioning briefly here now that discussions were going on on Sunday between José María Aguilar and Ramón Díaz to solve River’s current crisis by bringing back the most successful manager in the club’s history. His contractual situation with América de México is the sticking point at present. Meanwhile, Clarín are reporting that Juan Román Riquelme may be charged with inciting disorder…
Díaz returned to Mexico on Monday as América returned to training, and some were speculating that he’s set to resign his charge of the country’s second biggest club this week. He’s told River president Aguilar that he wants to return to the club where his heart lies, but also wanted to respect his contract at América, which runs for another year. The temptation to bring River back from the brink, though, may yet prove too much for him.
Riquelme is being cited by the district attorney María Florencia Zapata for his celebrations after scoring his (and Boca Juniors’) second goal in the clásico against Racing in La Bombonera on Sunday. After rifling in what proved to be the winning goal, Riquelme ran to the executive boxes and pointedly singled out one fan, who had earlier been insulting the playmaker for reasons best known to himself (but which, at a guess, may have something to do with his form for club and country earlier in the year). There were scuffles in the stands around the fan and Zapata wants to see Riquelme brought up for ‘inciting disorder at a sporting event’.
Riquelme had claimed after the match that the young man – who on Monday appeared on national TV giving his version of events – had been insulting the team throughout the match and looked very nervous after the player had celebrated his second goal. Quite how Riquelme heard this one supporter’s shouting above the Bombonera crowd, he didn’t explain. He did explain what he’d said, though: ‘I only pointed out to him that now, he was celebrating the goal.’
Luis Cevasco, the attorney for the barrio of La Boca, had earlier explained to news channel TN that the investigation had begun after remarks from the officials who’d had to escort the fan from the stand when other supporters expressed their displeasure at him following Riquelme’s second half goal. Riquelme could be tried over contravention of articles 99 and 101 of the Código Contravencional. The possible punishments are a AR$600 to AR$2,000 fine or 10 days’ jail time for the first, and a AR$200 to AR$1,000 fine or five days behind bars for the second. It all seems a bit silly, really.
Very silly indeed!
I do hope Diaz returns to River. It’s the best fit for both him and the club, although even if he and Aguilar have been able to put aside their differences, I’ll be surprised if Club America let it happen.
Mind boggling. The Barrabrava pretty much do what they want but some jackass (lawyer) wants to prosecute Riquelme for next to nothing. Priorities, priorities.
The several closely analyzed replay clips of the Roman “incident” absolutely confirm your estimate of the whole affair as completely silly.
And as to Diaz, he appeared last night before the assembled Mexican sporting press to field questions about the River rumor, and did a brilliant job of congenially hedging and evading his way through the whole affair–confirming, at least in this viewer’s mind, that the River negotiations are well underway if not all but concluded. (To illustrate his sudden indifference as to the fortunes of club America–which he managed into disrespectable mediocrity in the recently completed torneo–RD had not a word to say about their signing, earlier in the day, of the Chilean winger Beausejour.)
And then again, another later clip of the Diaz interview, now re-edited, reveals him suggesting the River deal was never anything but friendly conversation, that he was never looking for the job anyway, and that he welcomes the arrival of Beausejour with great anticipation. So this obviously means that, depending on which version of media spin you prefer to accept, the deal is either definitely off or absolutely on.
And last night, at the airport in Mexico City, where it was pointed out his star Argentine striker Alejandro Moreno was missing the flight to training camp in Cancun (because Moreno is evidently being offloaded to Pachuca to replace Bruno Marioni, who’s heading back to Atlas), Diaz adopted a new strategy with the Mexican media–brushed past them with his head down and a grim stare at the floor, refusing all queries reporters dished out as though they were offering him not questions but hand grenades
It’s looking more and more like Diaz will be unhappy he didn’t go to River. In addition to the apparent loss of “Chango” Moreno (that’s Alfredo–did I say Alejandro?), he’s just allowed several club America mainstays to go on the transfer list–including the veteran German Villa, whom he’s been nudging out all through the past torneo, and the Argentine defender Sebastian Dominguez, with whom he famously hasn’t gotten along. The ex-America star Cuauhtemoc Blanco, now back in Mexico with Santos and playing in the liguilla semi-finals, has openly and bitterly attacked “El Pelado” in the press for getting rid of Villa, “a player who gave everything, who was a symbol of americanismo.” Small wonder RD is now not talking to anybody.