The virtual meeting held by Sergio Marchi, head of Argentinian Association Footballers, with the footballers of the different clubs during the week left a lot to analyze. Regardless of the harsh economic situation that lies ahead, the intention to extend the contracts that expire on June 30 and oppose the suspension of the declines for two years, there was something that caught the eye: the River campus I do not participate.
Neither Leonardo Ponzio, nor Javier Pinola, captain and under-captain. Neither did Franco Armani or Enzo Pérez, two other references. No face of the players on the campus led by Marcelo Gallardo appeared in an image box on the Zoom platform organized by the footballers’ union. And it was not due to a technological or connection problem. In River there is a quarrel with Marchi.
It all started on March 13. When River decided to close the doors of the club and not show up for the next day’s match against Atlético Tucumán. In Núñez they glimpsed what was coming and the concern grew from a call that Pedro Hansing, a doctor at the campus led by Marcelo Gallardo, made to Rodolfo D’Onofrio the morning of that day, alerting him that a Reserve player had possible symptoms of coronavirus.
It was Thomas Gutiérrez, who was going to the substitutes bank that day in the match that the team of the pair Juan José Borrelli-Gustavo Fermani was winning 2-0 to the Tucumán team at the time of suspension due to lack of ambulance in the Ezeiza estate. But the Colombian defender had to go to a city clinic, where he was finally diagnosed with pharyngitis.
Anyway, the restlessness ran between the players of the professional establishment and they talked it over with Marcelo Gallardo. The latter, in turn, spoke with D’Onofrio. The three parties agreed that the best thing was to stop the ball and take care and prioritize health.
Time was running and on the evening of that Friday the first date of the Super League Cup began to be played. Gymnastics-Banfield in the first turn and Patronato-San Lorenzo, later. Riverbank captain Leonardo Ponzio contacted his peers from those teams. Everyone agreed that there was no playing. In fact, they recognized this publicly in statements they gave at the end of their matches. But they all came out on the field the same, pressured by the presidents of each institution.
Marchi was also alerted to this situation. But he did not intervene. And that generated discomfort on the River campus. “When he had to play it, he didn’t play it,” said a footballer from the Núñez club.
And the anger was greater with the statements that Marchi made a few days later. “You have to end River yes, River no, you have to discuss it at another time. If he played, if he did not play, if he closed the stadium, it is not the most important thing that is happening … We cannot make individual decisions, if everyone does what they want, this is chaos. The measure has to be solidary and organized, “Marchi shot on March 17, while saying he was going to abide by the players’ decision at the meeting they had scheduled.
It was not necessary. Before it happened, under pressure from the footballers, the national government backed down, the AFA also, and decreed the suspension of football. A month and a half later, in the absence of River in the zoom meeting, Marchi commented: “There are things here that are on a higher plane. Getting into a situation of who is coming or not, it seems to me that today is not At the discussion level, the question here is what the clubs are going to do with the contracts they have signed, how they are going to fulfill them, what they are going to do with the salary arrears and how we can solve a rather complex situation in the sports field. ”
Marchi gambled the question. But he could not remove the evidence that between his guild and the River squad there was a distance that will be difficult to shorten.