Argentine league Soccer in possible Shutdown

August 9, 2009 | Filed Under: Blog 
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argentina_maradona Financial obstacles might force a delay of the 2009 Apertura season, which is scheduled to start Friday night.

The long awaited kick-off in Argentina was scheduled for 14 August but the Football Association said there were clubs that still could not afford to pay players.

Julio Grondona, the football association president, said the nation could still enjoy its favourite sport if TV stations spent a bit more. “We want them to offer us a sum that corresponds to the value football gives them. We have to hope. The situation is not easy.TV always has supported us but at under value,” AFA president . It is time they pay football at the rate football is worth.”

Grondona tried to raise extra funding from TV stations for rights to air matches, arguing that their advertising revenues would slump if the season did not go ahead, but no deal was secured, and this, combined with the global financial slowdown and smaller transfer fees being received from Europe, meant that the clubs are really feeling the squeeze.

In response to the crisis, fans smashed windows and spraypainted the walls of the association’s headquarters in Buenos Aires after the announcement. Police in riot gear dispersed the crowd but made no arrests.

Argentina national coach Diego Maradona, told a radio show: “This country without football is dramatic.”

Could it happen really?

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