Infantino and the party committee | sports
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“The Super Bowl is played every year, why not have a World Cup every two?” Asked Gianni Infantino on his last institutional visit to Israel. The short answer is that you can’t have that much head. The long one invites us to remind you that the NFL, through its franchises, pays athletes to beat the copper each season to try to raise the Vince Lombardi trophy, while FIFA continues to engulf the effort of others to unbearable limits. Mainly economically, that is obvious, but also – and it does not seem less important – in terms of human capital.
For those of us from the village, FIFA reminds us, in substance and form, of many of those party committees that were in charge of hiring the best orchestras to liven up the bosses’ festivities. Months before, the representatives of those self-proclaimed governing bodies would pass by the neighbors’ houses announcing their intentions: “We are going to bring La Panorama and well, you know,” they said. That “you know” was his way of reminding you that the cache of the fashionable orchestra was not paid by contributing a thousand pesetas per person. He had to scratch his pocket seriously, conscientiously, searching even under the smallest folds because one never knows where paper money might hide. Above all was the common good, social prestige. And very deep, almost bordering on the murky, that feeling that there was no way to control the money donated, to know how much was raised in total and what was invested, or where it ended. Like FIFA itself, or at least a good handful of its former members, many of those party committees ended up sitting before a judge accused, among other things, of money laundering.
Infantino, who surely has no other choice because the position obliges, speaks as if none of this had happened. What the FIFA president does is similar to squid fishing. For some reason that escapes me – I am a bad fisherman and a lousy fan, nobody is perfect – this cephalopod mollusk is attracted to glitter and that is the World Cup for us: a perfect bait, because who does not like it a World Cup with all its emotions and traditions every 24 months. The advantage of the fan with respect to the poor squid is that itching does not imply death, hence some do not see Infantino’s new proposal with such bad eyes. Overloading even more an already insane calendar for footballers seems accessory to us. “They are going in the salary”, we think. The problem, as I said at the beginning, is that FIFA is not responsible for paying these salaries to the protagonists of its big business.
On the next day of the League, several Spanish clubs will be left without the contest of footballers who traveled to play qualifying matches for the next World Cup in Qatar with their national teams and returned injured. The same happens with other major league teams and meanwhile, as if the music were not with him, Gianni Infantino takes advantage of an institutional act to insist on his efforts to squeeze more of the goose that lays the golden eggs: a hen that does not It is his, that he does not feed, and that he will end up killing if the real protagonists – the footballers themselves – do not unite to, once and for all, announce that the old custom of dedicating their encores to the party commission is over.
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