Second Place Winner, December 2011 Photo Contest
Miami, Largo & Winter Springs !!!
Teams: Chile, USA, R Plate, CC, The "U" and Bucs
Wild West Argentina :thmbdown: :undecide:
The days of disappearances and reappearances of bloated corpses along the River Plate estuary may have thankfully been consigned to the dustbin of history, but Argentina is still held thrall to a small minority of thugs.
The end to the recent Apertura highlighted that the ability of ‘Barrabravas’ to dictate the course of football in such a proud nation, so are fans of Argentine football – and Argentina – doomed to be depressed with more of the same in 2007?
Argentina belongs to that select band of countries that are fated to figure in the fight for footballing prominence, but the Albiceleste flag is forced to wave at a frequency dictated by the organised supporters’ groups known as ‘Barrabravas’ .
These are, or see themselves, as the strong arm of the organised supporters’ groups that like to see themselves as a type of self-proclaimed elite shock troop, misled into the delusion that their actions are in defense of their club.
The influence and delusions of grandeur that seep from such ‘Barrabravas’ end up gelling into demands being presented to clubs, other fan groups and even local and central governments. The recent case of Di Zeo, still under police investigation, highlights the extent to which the situation can reach with ‘fan reps’ dictating how a team should play.
In the meantime Argentina is under the constant threat of reaction if the whims of the ‘Barrabravas’ aren’t duly satisfied. Even if they get their ‘demands’ they still terrorise stadiums with the fact that they can turn a football match into a pathetic demonstration of how the game can be destroyed via flares, vandalism, pyromania and random beatings.
This sometimes boils over into real tragedy as in the case of Daniel Hernán García, murdered in Paysandú, Uruguay, in the wake of watching Argentina play Chile in the 1995 Americas Cup. On his way out of the stadium, Daniel was ambushed and stabbed close to the heart, bleeding to death before an ambulance could arrive.
In a sad echo of the mothers of the ‘disappeared’ – those who vanished under the thankfully extinct dictatorship – Lucía Suárez, his bereaved mother, visits the same neighbouring Argentina where various suspects from the ‘Morón’ and ‘Tigre’ still await judgement for the stabbing over a decade after the death.
A crystal cut clear example is Máximo Zurita, ‘El Gordo Cadena’ (The Fat Chain) the boss of the ‘Gallo’ (Rooster) supporters’ group, the ‘Moronense’ enforcer in the Roussellot era. The sins of over ten years ago, dating back in a shameful blood smear almost two decades of reducing Argentinean football stadiums from temples to abattoirs.
Just a month ago the end of the year was subject to yet another demonstration of the power of the ‘Barrabravas’ when groups from ‘Argentino de Quilmes’ and ‘Claypole’ wrecked train stations freely, knowing so well that they would be released Scott free mere hours later thanks to political connections with a hand in police pockets. And, surprise, they were.
A recent article in Argentina referred to this ongoing plague of unpredictable, yet far-reaching, attacks as the latest pathology to hit Argentina with a dirty taste of past horror mixed in. The ‘Barrabravas’ have evolved, have switched up a gear, and are now following the law of all street gangs and entering into the political arena as hired hands to prove points on a stage that captivates the Argentinean public: that hallowed rectangle of turf.
These thugs aren’t political in the sense that they possess an identity that could be defined as solely fascist, racist or nationalist as the creed of the ‘Barrabravas’ is simple: a match is focused on what happens on the terraces and unconcerned with that distracting game on the pitch below. Left-wing red and right-wing blue are subservient to a club’s colours.
Argentine journalist Pablo Arias has written perhaps the best synthesis of where Argentine football, entering a brand new calendar year with an old stink lingering in the background:
“They [the ‘Barrabravas’] have managed to turn a noble tool – as politics can be – and a great party – as football can be – into sinister metaphors, into mere screens for the projection of an impugn army of terror. They have transformed us, almost without us noticing, into a country of ‘Barrabravas’.”
You may love Argentina, you may hate Argentina, but there is a chord here that rings true to any real football fan rather than a club fanatic in any country. A majority just want to live and love a sport as one of the few distractions from a soul-sucking existence soiled by politicians’ dirty acts, and this is thus a sick situation where a minority holds the fans hostage, scare families away from stadiums, shed blood…for nothing.
The ‘Barrabravas’ will feature this coming year, returning like a tumour fed up of remission and spreading to contaminate the tissue around it. There’s always the eternal hope that – like politicians – they’ll all turn out to be far less poisonous than they’re painted. Maybe the best that we can hope for is that we hear the least from them as possible in 2007. Unless they just want to cheer for a game called football.
Chairman of the BORED © !!!!!& MASTER BAITER ©
In all fairness...if Carson35 IS allowed to copy & paste here..So can I !!!!
Que la chupen., y la sigan chupando !!!!
National Champions. 83 87 89 91 and 2001
Xtratime is FULL of BULLIES, and not enough Indians.
Damos TODO por los Chilenos en el extranjero