With our resident-ranter Susanne off jet-setting to warmer climes, I return for my sophomore post in her stead. Safe travels, Suzy!
We are on the eve of another Derbi Madrileño, and, correct me if I’m wrong, this may be the first time in quite a while that the cybersphere isn’t congested with the typical Blanco trash-talking ’til the cows come home.
But I’m not so convinced that that’s a good thing, to be honest.
Rather than the usual chuckle I have to myself at some supercilious comment or another, headlines this morning only disconcerted me.
And here’s why…
Newly-promoted Liga minnows Elche had the… erm, pleasure, of playing our next opponents on Wednesday evening, and despite all the big-name stars on our city rival’s roster, the name on everyone’s fingertips was: César Muñiz Fernández.
He officiated the match, a bout that had #RoboAlElche trending before the night was done.
A controversial call — to put it mildly — resulted in a 96th-minute penalty for Los Vikingos (a particularly apt moniker on this occasion), which Crissy converted for 1-2, thereby robbing the little guys of a much-deserved point.
Being an Atleti supporter, of course, I, and presumably all of you, are used to this kind of debacle. How many times has it happened to us, when, like Elche, our men were ballsy enough to dare to wrest a result from one of the behemoths?
I can think of a few.
Perea’s disallowed derby goal. Phantom fouls and the horrendous officiating in what seems to be every match versus Barcelona.
I don’t use that word out of respect, mind you. But what else can they be if, with not only money on their side, they have clout with the refs, too?
How is it that, in 2013, the sub-par officiating in Spain hasn’t been addressed? Don’t tell me this is football. Football is football, and football includes properly trained, competent referees. They don’t have to get it right 100% of the time, but they can’t be allowed to get it so wrong, so often. Especially when it only serves to keep behemoths at the top.
All day, the only thought running through my mind was, ‘Please, please don’t let that happen to us’. There is nothing more heart-breaking than knowing you deserve better, that you earned it, but were denied anyway.
So bring back the Juankers, please. I prefer to deal with that kind of BS off the pitch than on it.