domingo, 18 de julio de 2010
Maradona, and a strange renewal as coach of the Argentinean team (Yahoo)
It is rather strange but AFA (Association of the Argentinean Football) will offer this week to Diego Maradona the renewal of his contract as coach of the Argentinean team for four years more, until the end of its participation in the World Championship in Brazil 2014, in spite of the very bad end in South Africa 2010 when it was goaled 0-4 by Germany.
In low, there are many critics made with regard to Maradona’s job with the Argentinean team since he assumed in November 2008 and there are still many dark points related to what happened in South Africa, as the amazing absence of one of the players called to be the leader of the team, the veteran Juan Sebastián Verón, or the direct disappearance on the stage (even up to day) of the manager and ex coach World Champion in 1986, Carlos Salvador Bilardo.
Bilardo’s silence previous to the start of the World Championship in South Africa, should be understood as to the enormous difficulties in communications with Maradona in the eliminatory times and deepened with the technical crew and the coach’s environment, specially his assistant Alejandro Mancuso (with whom Verón would had a strong discussion), and with the physical assistant Fernando Signorini, who is ideologically placed near the ex coach Argentinean Champion in 1978 and declared enemy of Bilardo, César Luis Menotti.
A lot of what happened, doors inside, in the Argentinean team during the concentration in the High Performance Centre of the University in Pretoria during the World Championship may be summarized in the last press conference of Maradona after a hard defeat vs Germany by 0-4 in Cape Town, when he stated that he will deepen “the football line that the Argentines like, that of possessing the ball and attack”.
Undoubtedly, the words used (“the football that the people like”), moreover they may be certain or not, they had a clear destiny and is nothing else but Bilardo, ex companion of Juan Ramón Verón (father of Juan Sebastián) in Estudiantes multiple Champion in the sixties and everything indicates that the midfielder could have paid for the bad communications between the parties, what, besides, had affected, indirectly, to Lionel Messi, room companion of Veron and who (contrarily to what he thought) ended to have to contain him.
With strong critics of the specialized press towards the wrong planning of the matches on behalf of Maradona, and many of the Argentinean directives who were present at the World Championship (in fact, the general secretary of the National team department, Luis Segura, he presented his renounce to the position), and with a president of the AFA, Julio Grondona, who doesn’t feel sure with the present coach, it is rather difficult to understand the quick offer for the renewal for four years more if the matter is not read from the political point of view rather than the sportive.
With Maradona closed since his return to Argentina in his home in Ezeiza (a few kilometres of the principal International airport of the country), and with Grondona just returned from the World Championship where he had to remain as vice-president of the FIFA (the second directive of the entity after the president Joseph Blatter), the ex star was called by the young Gastón Granados, the son of the mayor of Ezeiza (where Maradona lives), Alejandro Granados and the national official representative Dulce Granados.
Gastón Granados is today, the principal link between the ex president (and husband of the president Cristina) Néstor Kirchner, and Maradona, namely, that the present Argentinean Government (that the couple is in the government since 2003 and will end in 2011, when there will be elections, though everything indicates that Néstor Kirchner will present himself again as presidential candidate) and the coach, their relationship since 2009 cannot be better.
This year, the Argentinean Government of Cristina Kirchner decided to establish state television transmissions of local football considering (rightly) that same were being monopolised in abusive manner by a joint among the principal media group (Clarín) and the company Torneos y Competencias (TyC).
The expropriation of the rights and the successive pass of the transmissions of the matches to the State Channel 7 in a convulsive moment due to the strong debate regarding the new Act of Communication Media (finally approved by the Legislative Body) derived in an impressive act of presentation of the new Project called “Football for everybody” with the assistance of the president, Grondona and a Maradona who won this day, the unconditional backing of the Government and the State media..
At the same time, the fact that Grondona does not trust his capacity as coach, but offers him four years more of the contract, even risking a lot the possibility to lose again the Copa América at home (it already occurred the year after winning the World Championship in Mexico when in 1987 the Argentinean team ended fourth in its last contest at home), it should be read from his intention not to be put in a bad place with the Argentinean Government, due to the enormous expectative there is they have that the new Act of the Media voted recently grants major economic income for the AFA because this normative contemplates the distribution of new digital channels in a third part for the State, a third part for the privates and a third part for ONG, in which AFA could enter.
Grondona, every time more explicitly, shortly being 79 years of age and 31 as AFA’s president, declares his dream to finish his directive functions in Buenos Aires, winning the Copa América de 2011 and placing his son Julio junior (today president of Arsenal, and younger son of the three –two boys and one girl – in his position, to dedicate himself to the FIFA, exclusively, though extending his power in the shadow, in the Argentinean football and with an economic benefit highly stronger from his own channel of TV, as it happens in England with the Federation.
Grondona, old fox of football, know well that in politics the times are fundamental and what today is in one way tomorrow may be in another. He knows well, as well, that a personage as he does not want, absolutely, as the ex World Champion defender, Oscar Ruggeri, whom Grondona did not accept as assistant, dared to disobey him and travelled to South Africa with the excuse that he had to work as a reporter of the TV but he presented himself often at the University of Pretoria to visit Maradona many grant him the influence for the Argentinean team to mark with four central defenders during the contest.
But Grondona say nothing because he pretends the channel, know that Maradona counts with his support too much from the power to discuss and he also knows that in 2011 there are presidential elections and perhaps everything will change if this government goes away or if the Argentinean team does not win at home the Copa America. Namely, he bets for everything to float and decants, as the life itself.
Not in vane he always wears a ring with the inscription “everything passes”, though now, since some months ago, he added a little chain that also says “something remains”
Everything indicates then, that this week, it is possible that there will be announcement that Maradona continues in the position of coach for four years more, but the time and the circumstances will tell.