RIVER-BOCA

Menotti: "How can they play the final outside Argentina just for throwing 4 stones?"

Menotti: "How can they play the final outside Argentina just for throwing 4 stones?"

The former River and Boca coach told SER Deportivos: "If I was in similar circumstances, I wouldn't have gone. The gate receipts are more important than the game".

César Luis Menotti, one of the major references in coaching in the Argentinean game and world football, chatted about tomorrow's Copa Libertadores clash between River Plate and Boca Juniors with SER Deportivos.

A Superclásico outside of Argentina: "The game should have been played on the same day it was scheduled to be played, at River's stadium. I've had stones hurled at me too when I was on the Barcelona team bus when we travelled across town to play Espanyol.... Obviously, I am not condoning it, but these things have always happened - people who not right in the head do those things but it's normal. It's not severe enough to show a total lack of respect to 60,000 people who, from six o'clock in the morning had queued up to buy their tickets - families with children... around 30 per cent had travelled from other parts of the country, had booked hotels, or had made long bus journeys to get to the capital.."

COPA LIBERTADORES FINALBoca Juniors and River Plate fans outside the Santiago Bernabéu earlier today

Money ruining the game

Frustrating year: "This brings to a close what has been a very sorry year but the corporate world of big buisness is devouring everything. The decline and negative impact on cultural is staggering and we are doing nothing to counter balance it. The gate receipts are more important than the game itself and that's how sad things have become".

If you were one of the coaches, what would you have done? "If it was me, I wouldn't have gone [to play in Madrid]. If I were coach at Boca or River, I'd be even angrier than I am now. During all of my career, I have always repected the people and I cannot undersrtand this game, one which is so emblematic for Argentinean football, can be played outside of Argentina. For me, I think it's highly offensive and disrespectful that for four people who threw stones at a bus they have to play the game at another ground and not River's ground - I'm not saying that because it's going ahead in Spain -  I don't think it should be played abroad. All I hope is that it's a fiesta of football for the Spanish and that nothing untoward happens because for Argentineans, it won't be a party at all".

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