Wait a minute, wait a minute… didn’t we already go through this in 2009? Apparently the lesson didn’t take. Sebastian Bauza, AUF president and the entire executive council resigned in a shock move that follows some horrible decision-making from all parties involved including José Mujica, the Uruguayan President and Nobel Peace Prize candidate.

What Happened?

“Mujica abruptly withdrew police protection from the home stadiums of Penarol and Nacional, the country’s most popular teams, on Thursday after Nacional’s fans injured 40 police officers in post-game violence the night before.” so says an AP report but according to Reuters, this is what occurred, “Mujica withdrew police protection after the latest violent incident when Nacional fans fought with police at the end of their team’s 4-2 home defeat by Argentina’s Newell’s Old Boys in a Libertadores Cup match in Montevideo last Wednesday.”

Which led to this…

“The federation and its clubs decided to play Saturday’s games anyway, but the players pulled out on Sunday, saying they won’t be safe without police.” said an AP report, because police protection for the players could no longer be guaranteed, The players union, aka la Mutual Uruguaya de Futbolistas Profesionales, ordered a work stoppage – probably the smartest thing ever done by a players union in light of the horrible decisions taken by Bauzá, Nacional President Eduardo Ache, Peñarol President Juan Pedro Damiani and the President of the Republic José Mujica.

Bauzá steps aside – will Uruguay be excluded from the World Cup?

Bauzá steps aside – will Uruguay be excluded from the World Cup?

What Bauzá claims…

In a four point letter, the Executive Council outlined the vague reasons why they are resigning but largely put the blame on the “Political-Institutional” conditions that are preventing Uruguay’s football from moving forward. Strange letter, made even stranger by the fact that since the Summer Clasico, which resulted in the suspension of 9 players from both Nacional and Peñarol, Uruguay’s AUF has allowed the Government to mete out suspensions – which culminated in this bizarre intervention by Mujica’s government to NOT police Uruguay’s domestic league matches involving Peñarol and Nacional. Can you imagine if Sunday’s derby between Boca Juniors & River Plate did not have a police presence?

Biggest Losers:

Sebastian Bauzá – an ineffective President despite what the National Team has achieved in the last 4 years, stood behind as Uruguay’s domestic league came undone – finally allowed Uruguay’s government to get involved in football affairs… a big no-no in the land of FIFA.

José Mujica – His move to remove the police from Primera matches is irresponsible to say the least.

Will Uruguay be suspended from the World Cup?

This rumor is spreading like wildfire in Uruguay but  according to a Reuters report: “Eugenio Figueredo, the president of South American football’s governing body CONMEBOL, told Reuters that he knew of no FIFA investigation into the AUF… I’m totally unaware (of this FIFA story). The truth is I have no news from CONMEBOL or FIFA,” Figueredo said in a telephone interview from Chile where he was on a visit. “You can’t draw conclusions from a rumour.”

What’s next?

Since this Blog has been around, AUF presidents being fired, quitting or “replaced” is nothing new – in fact in 2009, Uruguay’s AUF went through three presidents in 3 months. What FIFA might do is kindly warn Mujica’s government not to get involved in football affairs via the old “if you keep this up, we’ll suspend you” warning letter – suspension is possible despite what Figueredo claimed but Mujica knows the value of football despite claiming he doesn’t really care for it much, if Uruguay is suspended from the World Cup, there’s no doubt his government would suffer greatly.

Yorugua Yorugua 1 likes

12 Responses so far.

  1. Yorugua Yorugua says:

    According to this article…

    http://bolavip.com/brasil-2014/131397/fifa-desafiliar-seleccion-uruguay-mundial-brasil-2014-sebastian-bauza-auf

    In order for Uruguay to be suspended, FIFA would have to prove that Mujica and Uruguay’s government forced Bauzá out – which would (if that is the case) lead to Uruguay’s suspension. The more likely culprit is the lack of support from several teams which is what occurred in 2009 as well.

    Current score: 1
  2. Celestito says:

    Why can’t the teams have private security inside the stadium and the police outside of it?
    Do you think there’s any relationship between Bauza quitting and the fact that he was going to renegotiate the Eliminatorias TV rights and possibly get $20 million dollars (10 million more than the last contract) potentially leaving Paco Casal out of the picture who is the person sustaining most small teams in the country (which most of them shouldn’t even exist since they can’t afford paying their salaries and have pretty much no fans to go see them play) therefore these teams withdrew their support on AUF forcing them to quit since they couldn’t govern anymore???

    Current score: 2
  3. thebigfeller thebigfeller says:

    I’ll be putting together an article on this in the next day or two. Bluntly though, a lot of the information above, however well-intentioned, isn’t accurate.

    And pointing the finger at Bauza is absolute nonsense. His resignation is a disastrous loss for Uruguayan football. The bad old days seem on the verge of returning – but that is not the fault of AUF in any way.

    In short, it’s complicated: VERY complicated. I’ll do my best to explain things in the next day or two.

    Current score: 1
    • Yorugua Yorugua says:

      Nonsense… moi? Rubbish!

      I assembled this with news articles out there… you being in MVD should give you a more rounded opinion. I hope there is more to this story… but if there’s a shred of bolso bashing, your forthcoming article may get deleted :-)

      Kidding of course… but 2 days to post? Give us the short and easy!

      Current score: 2
    • thebigfeller thebigfeller says:

      Incidentally, I must apologise to Yorugua here. I was quite short (ie. short-tempered!) in my response to this article. I’ve become quite protective of Bauza, and am really sad about what’s happened.

      Current score: 1
    • Yorugua Yorugua says:

      @TBF
      No need to apologize. I don’t get my feathers ruffled so easily.

      Current score: 1
  4. AussieCeleste AussieCeleste says:

    If it has taken this to bring back TBF, hurray!

    I’ve really, really missed being able to troll someone like a younger, less ignorant version of myself.

    Anyway, before he spoils everything with facts, let me make a few comments of my own.

    1. All South American football administrators seem completely useless, some of them incompetent, some ineffective, many utterly venal.
    – why hasn’t Uruguay built a decent stadium since 1930? There are 4 million New Zealanders, and they have brilliant stadia at Auckland, Wellington, Dunedin and North Harbour and an earthquake-damaged one at Christchurch.
    – why can’t Uruguay produce a stadium with a decent surface?

    2. Brazil seems to be moving towards stadia safe for families, but why must Uruguay ape Argentina in having a horrible, aggressive atmosphere full of male thugs?

    3. Why shouldn’t the government withdraw the Police? Why should they put life and limb at risk to get in the middle of an assembly of thugs?

    Uruguay is not a poor country and it is football-mad. There is something wrong when Qatar can make itself into a country fit to hold a football tournament but Uruguay can’t.

    Lastly, have Bauza and his mates even thought about 2030? Uruguay has one chance, ever, to host a World Cup. And to do so it has to prove that it is safe and reliable, a low-maintenance choice. And if Argentina remains subject to hooliganism that helps further still, increasing the chances of Montevideo hosting the semi-final or even the final.

    Uruguay needs to present itself as the “safe” choice for 1930.

    Not just another Latin American banana republic.

    Current score: 2
  5. fafa fafa says:

    This is worse than yelling “estamos en la B estamos en la B”…

    Uruguayan football has just suffered an earthquake and the extent of the damage will take some time to fully understand.

    There’s a storm coming in the world of football….

    Current score: 2
  6. NicoGF NicoGF says:

    maybe lucho el chapulin colorado?

    Current score: 1
  7. FourThreeThree FourThreeThree says:

    Bauza’s wording in his resignation and the recent “confrontation” between the AUF and the government may give the perception that he was pushed aside by the government. For a guy who prided himself on being a straight shooter, why all the dramatics? Why not say that he is resigning due to the lack of support from the big teams AND the small teams (i.e. basically everyone).

    I wonder if people are upset that Bauza is resigning or this perception by FIFA and what it may do to Uruguay’s chances in the World Cup. After all, it might finally give FIFA an excuse to exclude Uruguay, something they have probably been toying with since the Uruguayan clubs took CONMEBOL to court.

    If I look back at Bauza’s tenure, the only positive I can find is how he was able to get all the teams on-board to solicit bids for the TV rights and force Tenfield to up the ante. However, the recent quick exits from Libertadores has damaged the TV value of Uruguayan football and likely will make the next negotiations very difficult. As mentioned here in this blog, the violence in the stands still exists and he was non-existent in doling out punishment for the Clasico violence. He basically allowed the courts to act for him. How can he justify the government providing money for policing of the stadiums, that should fall under the responsibility of each team? The national junior teams are thriving but let’s be honest, most of that credit goes to the lower division coaches who teach the skills to the youngsters. And let’s not forget that after the cash bonanza of 2010, the AUF had more money to be able to invest in the youth teams for friendlies, etc. Most league teams continue to be poor even with more money from TV, players don’t know where their paycheques are coming from. And the teams can’t afford to maintain the fields. Talking about the fields. I was hoping a while back that somehow Charrua Stadium could be the home field for the smaller teams. I was shocked to know it is actually being used by the rugby team (correct me if I’m wrong), but this stadium was upgraded using money from FIFA’s GOAL program.

    So, losing Bauza is no great loss. Maybe the fear is that we may end up with someone worse.

    PS: I wouldn’t worry too much if this instability hurts our chances for the 2030 World Cup. While for sentimental reasons, it would be great to have the World Cup in Uruguay in 2030, FIFA is a business and there is no way Uruguay could ante up the kind of money that Brazil, Russia or Qatar have put up to get the World Cup. And it only will get more expensive from now to when the voting takes place.

    Current score: 3
 

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