Football In Argentina
The Argentine football association and the National Technology University (UTN) signed a joint agreement aimed at eradicating violence in Argentinian football – a deep-rooted problem that will be difficult to solve in a country with such unbridled passion for the sport. Within the space of 120 days, the UTN intends to produce a precise and feasible plan of action. The signing, attended by security forces from the national government as well as the city and province of Buenos Aires, took place at the AFA headquarters. AFA General Secretary Dr Jose Luis Meiszner commented: “We are intent on finding a solution to the problem of violence. It is a topic that keeps us constantly on our toes. Officials are not experts on the subject and although we have always done what we were asked to do, it was obviously not enough. We have gone from one office to another, listened to countless suggestions and never ignored people’s protests. Now we are linking up with academics from the UTN; they are experts with the will to succeed. We are determined to put into practice what they tell us. There will be internet checks, computerised tickets and new, more efficient control – and that is only the beginning, the precautionary stage. The final cure for this scourge that is undermining the very fibre of society might take years to achieve but it is no excuse for not doing something about it.”
Now that Argentine coach Marcelo Bielsa has taken charge of Chile’s national team, the debate on the 2010 World Cup preliminaries has subsided. Bielsa coached the Argentine national side for six years and throughout the 2002 FIFA World Cup™ campaign, before stepping down after winning Olympic gold in Athens in 2004. His appointment was greeted with delight and raised high hopes among the Chilean media. All ten South American counties now have their coaching team in place. Bielsa made his debut as Chilie coach against Switzerland on 7 September.