Beyond the discussions with the Professional League for not enabling RiverCamp, there is a conflict that has to do with money and power.
Eight months have passed since River last played an official game for Argentine soccer, the night he lost the Superliga at the hands of Boca after equalizing 1-1 as a visitor against Atlético Tucumán. A week later, he did not show up to play against the same rival at the start of the game. Superliga Cup due to the arrival of the coronavirus pandemic.
Time passed and River is again in conflict with the Argentine soccer authorities. Now, specifically with the Professional League, after they did not enable the RiverCamp. In other words, this situation left Rodolfo D’Onofrio and Marcelo Tinelli facing each other, allies until not long ago in baseball politics. But this time Marcelo Gallardo’s team will take to the field. It will be local in Independiente. Although under protest, he will play.
“Playing under protest is reserving any claim that we want to make in the future,” he explained to Clarion a senior leader of the institution of Núñez. And he added: “It is to prove that you play dissatisfied.” What arises from Núñez is that the League is forcing River to go out to look for a stadium when it had already prepared the main field of the Ezeiza property with the corresponding requirements to play there while remodeling the Monumental. in an exceptional context in the midst of a pandemic. In his understanding, the decision that was made is a detriment to the club.
But on the other hand, behind this confrontation looms the dispute over the distribution of television rights money, today distributed 50 percent in equal parts, 25% for sporting merit and another 25% for rating. This was admitted by two leaders who are usually in the thread. “The bottom fight is the money that must be received from television,” said Nicolás Russo, president of Lanús. “The substance of this issue is in the lifelong discussion for the distribution of television resources,” he acknowledged Mario Leito, owner of Atlético Tucumán and vice third of the Professional League.
On this occasion, unlike what happened almost eight months ago, at no time was it seriously evaluated not to present the team, although some angry leaders proposed that measure. River was going to be recidivist and the penalties could be aggravated (the loss of category is only contemplated for when a team does not appear three times in the same championship, as established in article 72 of the Regulation of Transgressions and Penalties of the AFA), but the decision was not taken thinking about sanctions. “You can’t break everything, all the time, either,” commented one manager.
Having gone down that path could put the AFA in front again, just at a time when there was an approach to discuss the distribution of the money from televising (last week a meeting was held in the building on the street Viamonte between Chiqui Tapia, D’Onofrio and Jorge Ameal for that matter) and that both River and Boca are not excluded from the negotiations with the channels that broadcast football.
As for the AFA, River waited for him to intervene in the case. But Claudio Tapia (he had given RiverCamp his blessing on Thursday) did not appear publicly since Saturday and the entity he presides did not express itself officially either. Then, there was a war of communications between the League and River. And, as had happened eight months ago, the trenches were divided between Tinelli and D’Onofrio.
Without doing an inspection of the place, the League vetoed the RiverCamp using as the main argument “the care and image of the product” and it was adjusted to the regulations, which say that courts that do not have capacity for at least 16 thousand people will not be enabled. In March, the letter from the League, whose main signature was also that of Tinelli, said that River was going to be sanctioned for taking an “individualistic and unilateral attitude” by not showing up to play on the first date of the Super League Cup. . A few days later, Tinelli and D’Onofrio met and supposedly cleared up the scores.
That situation reappeared on the surface in the last hours. Leito claimed again the points of that match. “We went to play and, by not playing, what we are asking is that the regulations be applied. It is up to us that they give us the points ”.
Last week Fernando Mitjans, the president of the Disciplinary Court of the AFA, said that for this case “there could be a sanction for River.” But since the Cup was annulled, the only thing that could fit it is an economic fine equivalent to the price of 2,250 popular tickets, that is, one and a half million pesos.
It is not known what will happen with that sanction or how far the fire that was opened by the RiverCamp will reach, from where it was only this Monday at noon that the League ordered the removal of the elements to assemble the portico with the signage that has its insignia. The concrete thing is that Marcelo Gallardo’s team will play again and will do so in Independiente. Of course: the conflict between River and the League continues. Can D’Onofrio and Tinelli prevent the battle from turning into a war? Will they have a talk again in a space in the building where they both live? Or is there no turning back?