Although the answer was not yet official, they already slipped that they would not let Marcelo Gallardo’s team play on their premises.
River wants to be a local in the Ezeiza estate in the new national cup with which soccer will resume in Argentina but the AFA and the Professional Soccer League will not. And this decision seems to respond to a political setback that reveals that the differences between the top leadership of the mother house of Argentine football and Núñez’s club continue.
Has this situation gotten into the middle of the conflict that was exposed on Friday afternoon when River -like Boca- issued a statement explaining that both clubs were not part of the definition of the new contractual rights scenario of Argentine soccer television? Both institutions affirmed that they were not consulted considering that “they are a fundamental part of the sporting event.”
River sent a formal note to the AFA and the Professional Soccer League to be local in its Ezeiza property throughout the new tournament that will begin on the 30th of this month. They consider that RiverCamp meets the conditions to be able to play there.
The playing field of the main court has the same measures (105 x 70) as that of the Monumental -currently closed for works- and has eight lighting towers with the same characteristics and the same power as those of the stadium: 1,500 LED lights lumens. A measure that is requested by Conmebol. In addition, they have modern and well-equipped changing rooms.
In River they believe that Marcelo Gallardo’s team can safely host Banfield, Rosario Central and Godoy Cruz, rivals in group 3 of the new Professional Football League cup. They even have the endorsement of government and security agencies. And they wait for an official answer. However, the AFA and the LPF have already given signals that the answer would be negative. Is it for a political issue?
From the League, they argue that the official position is that the tournament matches respect the canons that Conmebol has in the Copa Libertadores in terms of the structure of the stadiums. They also warn that on the property there would be inconveniences for the development of television transmission. But this position falls because the company that has the television rights was willing to broadcast the friendly River-San Lorenzo and River-Newell’s that recently were played at the Ezeiza property. They were not broadcast because the technical bodies wanted them to go behind closed doors as if they were formal soccer training sessions. So, in River they do not understand why the answer would be negative.
The president of the League, Marcelo Tinelli, has already told Rodolfo D’Onofrio that they seek to abide by the same rules as Conmebol regarding the structure of the stadiums. However, River does not close that position that clearly harms the institution of Núñez because he will have to continue renting a stadium as he does with Independiente to play the Copa Libertadores matches.
Between River and Tinelli there had been friction at the beginning of the pandemic when in Núñez they decided to close the doors of the Monumental and not appear for the match against Atlético Tucumán for the first date of the Super League Cup (it was played only that day and then it was finished).
Then, the television host, as president of the Super League (Mariano Elizondo and Jorge Brito had already resigned) had made a note in which he affirmed that River would have sanctions for not submitting to the regulation. Later, the foam fell after a meeting between D’Onofrio and Tinelli. Things cleared up and the relationship continued as well.
Now, Tinelli -as president of the Professional Football League- is one of the main actors who must define where Gallardo’s team will be located. And he already slipped that there would be no authorization. Luis Silva, AFA’s manager of competitions, spoke in the same vein. If River is not allowed to play in Ezeiza, he will have some complications to solve. In addition to the expense of having to rent another stadium, another inconvenience would be added: security.
It is that despite the fact that it is played without an audience due to the pandemic, the security organizations recommend that when Independiente is local, Racing plays as a visitor and vice versa. If Gallardo’s team is local to Libertadores de América, setting up the calendar is difficult. The Vélez court could be another option but the Doll is very satisfied with the grass of the court Red.
In fact, after the game that River beat San Pablo for the Copa Libertadores, the coach praised Independiente’s cancheros: “I congratulate you. They left the field at the Champions League level ”. He Millionaire He will be home again this Tuesday against Liga de Quito.
The idea of playing the matches of the local tournament at the Ezeiza property came after seeing that Real Madrid did the same for the final matches of last season in the Spanish League, of which it was champion. As the Santiago Bernabéu is undergoing renovations, Zinedine Zidane’s team was local at the Alfredo Di Stéfano stadium, located on their Valdebebas property, on the outskirts of Madrid.
In River they thought it convenient to do the same, given the reforms that are being made in the Monumental field of play, which will be completed by February 2021. However, the AFA and the LFP are closing the doors to RiverCamp, one of the the most developed sports grounds in the country, with an area of 14 hectares.