Madness and magic from Maradona’s motherland
There may have been thousands of international friendlies around the globe thanks to FIFA week, but the ravenous Argentines were far from having their football appetite sated by the sight of the national team in action.
So as we wind up for another weekend's action, most clubs are also winding down after midweek action. In and around Higuaín’s goal against Germany, there was also a full schedule of top-flight football.
Obviously, being FIFA week, AFA head honcho Julio Grondona was in Europe, doing what football association presidents do and giving a few interviews in the process.
As he limbered up to speak to the contradictorily titled radio show The Owners of Silence he warmed up with another conversation.
Don Julio clearly didn’t know he was on air as he discussed what appears to be a minor domestic problem with neighbour.
"I couldn’t do anything, everyone in Argentina thought I can sort myself out. I had nobody helping me..." you can just about hear him say, "then this woman appeared... her husband can’t get away with it either because he just craps his pants..."
Now, this blogger didn’t quite know what to make of this, but The Owners of Silence host Mauro Viale did. "She" was the presidenta, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, making the husband former president Néstor Kirchner.
Viale was sure that Grondona was talking about the TV rights deal, whereby the government pays £102 million a year to televise matches, and Grondona was caught explaining how he got away with it.
Red faces all round.
The deal that AFA struck with the goverment, Fútbol Para Todos (Football For Everyone), should actually include Siempre at the end, because there is football ALL the time here.
Paying attention to the international games meant taking an eye off the fantasy football team, which was a grave mistake. The midweek games proved to be a shocker for Argie Bargy, confirmed by the computer-generated abuse that passes for the Gran DT Update: 5666 people IN MY AREA did better in matchday 7.
So it is that after the midweek games, it's time to consider how to fit in these strikers:
Martin Palermo (Boca) Vélez and Boca played out an epic 4-4 on Tuesday night, with the Loco grabbing the headlines. Predictably, he missed a penalty, but then Riquelme served up a chance that Palermo buried. One more goal and he’s the all-time top scorer for Boca, which isn’t bad.
José Luis Calderón (Argentinos Juniors) If his legs can keep going for a few more months, Calderón could become the oldest goalscorer in Argentine football history. He scored the winner against Estudiantes at the tender age of 39, but wasn’t celebrating after his time in La Plata came to an acrimonious end in the close season.
Ruben ‘David Platt’ Ramirez (Banfield) The headlines said his second against Colón was a stunner, but the first was a England-Belgium type of effort, pirouette and volley in one, steering the champions on the way to a tidy 3-1 win over league leaders Colón.
Esteban Fuertes (Colón) Not to be outdone by Ramirez, Palermo or Calderón, ‘Bichi’ produced a trademark thunderbolt from 30 yards to keep Colón momentarily in the game at Banfield. The goal extended the 37-year-old’s lead as Colón’s record goalscorer.
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