Thursday, June 30, 2011

River Plate Relegated: Scenes from a Riot

Anyone familiar with world football knows that River Plate, in Buenos Aires, is one of the biggest, most storied clubs in Argentine club football. This past Sunday, the unthinkable happened, River was relegated to the second division, Primera B Nacional, after a 1-1 draw against Belgrano de Córdoba in relegation playoffs (Belgrano beat River 2-0 on Wednesday in the first leg of the playoff tie).

One of the riveting aspects of watching River Plate get relegated for the first time in its 100 plus year history was the reaction of the fans, the raw, painfully emotion on display, as well as the swelling anger. Obviously, things got a little out of hand as seen in the video below.

I know there are certain segments of soccer fans in the United States who want Major League Soccer to work with the lower divisions like NASL and USL to create a promotion/relegation system. Such a system definitely creates more reasons to watch, pay attention to the teams at the bottom of the standings, and prevents fans of said teams from becoming completely apathetic. Considering how MLS has only recently found true stability, while NASL and USL have had rocky existences, it's highly unlikely that promotion/relegation will be economically feasible in the United States anytime soon, but one day it may just happen.

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