ERIC WEIL in BUENOS AIRES: Another week and more scandals in Argentinian soccer football could have been avoided … and death number 282.

In Friday night’s National A Division match, Arsenal were beating visitors Lanus 2-1 when the referee Andrés Merlos added on five minutes extra time during which Lanus made it 2-2. Then, although there had been no further stoppages, he added on another minute and Lanus won 3-2.

The referee, apparently, will be suspended for four games, but that does not help Arsenal – and everybody thought the AFA was helping River Plate to become champions and not their closest rivals Lanus.

Yet all this could be avoided if FIFA followed some other team sports and introduced match time clocks which would be stopped when play stops. It would stop all these frequent arguments about extra time.

Matchfix claim

Independiente’s president, Hugo Moyano, says he intends taking legal action against neighbours Racing Club for not trying to win and losing 1-0 to Quilmes last year – a result which pushed Independiente closer to its eventual relegation, something which Racing fans always want. But it seems a little late for that.

Also, Independiente are basing their claim on a comment by Racing goalkeeper Sebastián Saja and he did not really say anything to incriminate Racing. Fixing matches is virtually impossible to prove and if Independiente were to win the case, the result would not be changed, nor would the match be replayed to allow them to possibly avoid relegation that year… nor recuperate the money the club say they it lost by going down.

On the subject of Independiente, the club announced that it is organising a party with the presence of former players who won important cups to generate money to finish their stadium.

Since Independiente sold Sergio Aguero to Europe and decided to build a new stadium with the proceeds – with which, at that time, they could have built two stadiums – numerous players have been sold “to finish the stadium” which is a monument to corruption.

Fatal fighting

Almirante Brown hooligans are split into three groups and one man was killed (No282) in inter-group fighting last week.

The  club’s committee (which should face criminal charges) and police are to blame. The police arrived 30 minutes late on the scene and the fighting was because the committee had given membership cards to what it calls its official gang, but refused them to the other hooligans… which is a cause for fighting at many clubs.


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