Madness and magic from Maradona’s motherland
With its poles, its silicone, and its thongs, Marcelo Tinelli’s Bailando por un sueño – Dancing for a Dream – is, for some obscure reason, a particularly successful TV show in Argentina.
But when Tinelli is not shouting into a microphone, surrounded by a harem of goddesses and addressing over a third of the nation’s TV audience, he can be seen at San Lorenzo.
Together with Lord Aragon, he is the highest-profile ciclón supporter.
Viggo Mortensen wears San Lorenzo shirts during interviews and converts fellow actors into club supporters.
Tinelli, however, has a slightly more hands-on role, or at least he did up until this week.
The TV presenter’s investment group was responsible for bringing the likes of coaches Ramón Díaz and Diego Simeone, along with Andrés D’Alessandro, Diego Placente and Santiago Solari, amongst others, to the club.
Tinelli was something of a sugar daddy for San Lorenzo, a wealthy fan who could bring the kind of players to the club that could win that elusive Libertadores Cup for the fans.
The problem was, it never happened.
And last weekend, another of ‘Tinelli’s players’, the brilliant but prickly Papu Gómez, was sent off as the team crashed to a 3-0 home defeat.
The supporters weren’t happy, and Gómez was almost beaten up by particularly irate fans on his way out of the stadium.
While Gómez said he considered retiring from the game, Tinelli decided it was time to leave San Lorenzo.
"It seems that some fans are only happy when the team lose," he said, telling the club’s president he didn’t want such an important role at the club.
For now he will take a back seat, and only help out with the club’s marketing.
"By him leaving," claimed the club’s treasurer, with a wording clearly inspired by hours watching Tinelli on TV, "San Lorenzo aren’t left naked."
Maybe they are not, but they will have to decide what to do with the coach, Diego Simeone, who Tinelli took to the club.
Less than two months ago the Cholo’s side were amongst the favourites to win the league and Sudamericana. Neither are now going to happen.
This weekend they take on Huracán in the derby, but if their minds are elsewhere, they need not worry – the Globo are in a similar position.
Huracán haven’t so much lost an investor – the club has never had money - but rather their spiritual leader.
Their coach, Ángel Cappa, quit a week ago, but his players convinced him to stay on.
This week he quit again, but will stay on till the end of the year.
According to Cappa, his relationship with some of the club’s directors has ‘worn thin.’
The vice-president doesn’t quite see it that way, stating that the moustachioed maestro (not the vice’s choice of words) is ‘Huracán’s Plan A, Plan B, and Plan C.’
Cappa insists he’ll be leaving, so the club will have a task on their hands making the successor feel wanted.
The fans are having none of it. This season’s two wins in 14 games hasn’t changed their opinion of Cappa, who came so close to winning the title just months ago playing brilliant football.
The supporters know that, as Olé put it, "without Cappa the tiki tiki dies, and Huracán will become just another team that plays like all the others."
Perhaps that is why the quemeros have set up an online petition for Cappa to stay, and why on Friday night they’ll meet outside the club offices to make some noise.
It seems like it’ll be too little too late, but as one supporter put it in the comments section of Cappa’s own blog, "hopefully it’s not an adios, but a hasta pronto."
Whatever it is, don’t expect dancing or dreaming from the either sets of fans when Huracán take on San Lorenzo this weekend.
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Argie Bargy... This has nothing to do with your article but are you familiar with "Showball?" --- I bring it up because I believe Tinelli originated the concept, which is Futsal played with aging Football has-beens, Maradona took the idea and used it on his own TV show, giving Argentineans the opportunity to see him before he eventually dies from the drug overdose we all know is eventually coming, until of course he became Argentinean NT coach. Anyway I recently saw a variation of Showball on Brazilian television, what a horrible idea if there ever was one... One of you guys or maybe Celso (Brazilian Guy) should write about how horrible Showball is, unless of course you like it which would leave me in the minority.
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