May 21, 2013
Why crucify Passarella?
A club president’s job in an all-sports club is to organize it, not just to make his soccer team win. So why are they all crucifying River Plate president Daniel Passarella because the soccer team, which has just been promoted back to the first division, is not top of the league?
So he did not keep a number of election campaign promises yet such as a roof over the stadium stands, mechanical stairs to seats, transparent match ticket distribution, etc., but others would not have been able to comply either. Passarella found the club in a terrible financial mess, caused by the previous committee, which he is fixing up, yet there is a suspicious media campaign against him which may be partly caused because they complain he refuses to give interviews — which is not true! In some cases, not the right players have been signed, but judgement is always difficult because there are some who play well in one team, but then cannot reproduce their good form in another.
Passarella has a lot of fans against him, merely because they expect the team to do better — the same fans who should have been more against the previous president (José María Aguilar) who wrecked the club, the same fans who want coach Matías Almeyda out and Ramón Díaz back although not so long ago they had booed Díaz and wanted him out, because the team lost. And it is these same fans (and media) who suffer from memory problems and who pressure the players so much that River Plate had gained 10 points from away matches and only two at home in the first nine matches.
So Passarella is not easy to get on with. He has called few committee meetings and gives little dice to opposition groups in the club. But opponents in a club committee (or parliament) often do nothing apart from criticizing the party in power to try and replace it. But are there any opponents at River Plate who could do better?
The only thing against Pasarrella is that he has not joined the fight against soccer hooligans, but then nor have hardly any other club presidents.
Anyway, if the soccer team gets some good results and moves up the table — especially if past Boca Juniors — all the opposition (by fans and media) will suddenly blow away... which only goes to show how stupid all hysteria this is!